Navigating a Speckled World: Interacting with Wireless Sensor Networks

Navigating a Speckled World: Interacting with Wireless Sensor Networks

Matthew Leach (Napier University, UK) and David Benyon (Napier University, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61520-769-5.ch014


The Speckled Computing project is a large multisite research project based in Scotland, UK. The aim of the project is to investigate, prototype, and produce tiny (1mm3) computational devices, called Specks, that can be configured into wireless sensor networks, called SpeckNets. Our particular interest is in how people might interact in such environments, what interaction tools they require, and what characteristics are required to be provided by the operating system of the Specks. Interaction in these environments places the human physically inside an information space. At one time, the human may be interacting with one Speck, at another with a hundred, and at another with several thousand. Moreover, the Specks themselves have no input method, apart from their sensors, and no output display. We explore these issues through taking some theories of distributed information spaces, some design principles from information visualization, and report on some empirical studies of prototypes and simulations that have been developed.

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