Aarhus University Seal

CPN 2000, New User Interface

New Interaction Methods for Complex Graphical Tools


CPN Group at DAIMI
Microsoft Research Limited
Danish National Centre for IT-Research


Duration: February 1999 - August 2001

Status reports:
September 1999


In the media:
Alexandra Newspaper, February 2000 (in Danish)
Alexandra Newspaper, February 2000 (in English)
Press Release, September 1999 (in Danish)
Press Release, September 1999 (in English)


Technical Reports
Conference papers

The purpose of this project is to develop and experiment with new interaction techniques for tools offering a complex graphical user interface. These techniques can be classified into three broad categories:

  • improving the representation of the objects to be manipulated, e.g., by the use of layers, rich graphical rendering and multi-scale representations;
  • improving the interaction between the user and the system with new direct manipulation techniques (e.g., mark-based input, marking menus, toolglasses, two-handed interaction) and better feedback;
  • improving the modelling of the user interface by creating a more object-oriented description of the interface and the interaction with concepts such as layers, styles, tools and constraints.

As a test bed for the experiments, the project will design and implement parts of a new user interface for Design/CPN. The new user interface is developed in the object-oriented BETA language which also has been developed a the University of Aarhus. The design and implementation of the basic graphical libraries will be made as reusable frameworks that can be used as the basis for development of other user interfaces with a strong graphical component, e.g., the FREJA graphical editor used in the MJØLNER environment supporting the development of BETA programs. The use of the BETA language and its environment implies that the new user interfaces will be available for the UNIX, Macintosh and Win32 platforms.

As indicated above, the work involves three different groups at the University of Aarhus: the CPN group, the BETA group and the HCI group. These groups are already collaborating in others projects and they are all part of the DEVISE Centre for Experimental System Development. Via the involvement of the HCI group, the project collaborates with the Center for Human-Machine Interaction, funded by the Danish National Research Foundation (Grundforskningsfonden).

Project Group

Research manager:
Søren Christensen, Associate Professor, CPN group, DAIMI,
Phone: +45 8942 5627, E-mail: schristensen@cs.au.dk
Business manager:
Janice Bogorad, Hewlett-Packard, Copenhagen
Phone: +45 4599 1355, E-mail: janice_bogorad@hp.com
Advisory group:
Ole Lehrmann Madsen, Professor, BETA group, DAIMI,
Susanne Bødker, Associate Professor, HCI group, DAIMI,
Michel Beaudouin-Lafon, Professor, University of Paris-Sud, France,
Kurt Jensen, Prof., Dr. Scient, CPN group, DAIMI,
Jørgen Lindskov Knudsen, Associate Professor, BETA group, DAIMI,
Wendy E. Mackay, Visiting Professor, DAIMI,
Olav W. Berthelsen, PostDoc, HCI group, DAIMI
Work group:
Kjeld Høyer Mortensen, PostDoc, CPN group, DAIMI,
Henry Michael Lassen, Student programmer/developer, BETA group, DAIMI,
Mads Sig Ager Jensen, Student programmer/developer, CPN group, DAIMI
Daniel Jogvan Nielsen, Student programmer/developer, CPN group, DAIMI,
Michael Westergaard, Student programmer/developer, CPN group, DAIMI,
Troels Bjerre Sørensen, Student programmer/developer, CPN group, DAIMI,
Martin Stig Stissing, Student programmer/developer, CPN group, DAIMI,
Mads Laursen, Student programmer/developer, CPN group, DAIMI,
Jacob Frank Qvortrup, Student programmer/developer, CPN group, DAIMI