Augmented Chemistry

Augmented Chemistry (AC) is an application that utilizes a tangible user interface (TUI) for organic chemistry education. Based on the outcome of an extensive evaluation, we are in the process of extending the AC system.

Augmented Chemistry (AC) is an application that utilises a tangible user interface (TUI) for organic chemistry education. Based on the outcome of an extensive evaluation, we are in the process of extending the AC system. Firstly, for enhanced interaction, keyboard-free system configuration, and internal/external database (DB) access, a graphic user interface (GUI) has been incorporated into the TUI. Three-dimensional (3D) rendering has also been improved using shadows and related effects which enhance depth perception. Secondly, AC has been ported to different operating systems and is now compatible with Linux-, Windows-, and Mac OS X based platforms. This enables the use of a wider range of hardware: USB and Firewire (IEEE 1394) cameras are now supported. Finally, system capacity to import and visualise molecules from an extensive XML-based DB has been realised. This gives users the ability to download and interact with any molecule up to a certain complexity. From a report comparing, among other things, the usability of the current AC system versus that of using a traditional Ball-and-Stick model, we concluded that the usability and intuitivity of the AC system would be greatly improved by incorporating a new, tangible, user interface. The current state of this development is of an experimental nature. We are investigating different methods for 3-dimensional positioning of the balls. One of the candidate techniques is using the balls as ultrasound beacons and calculating their position using an array of ultrasound microphones. Another aspect of the project involves some bug-fixing of the code and making the system available to the public by publishing the source on SourceForge.

Credits and history

  • Benedikt Voegtli Concept and design 3D graphics programming Development and evaluation research project
  • Patrick Juchli Software Architecture and programming
 

Publications or Reports

  • M. Fjeld , J. Fredriksson , M. Ejdestig , F. Duca , K. Bötschi , B. Voegtli, and P. Juchli. 2007. Tangible User Interface for Chemistry Education: Comparative Evaluation and Re-Design. Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI 2007). New York, NY, USA, PP. 805-808.  
  • E. Larsson, H. Holm, J. Kemi, M. Ejdestig, T. Johansson. 2006. Advances in the AC project and spatial ultrasound tracking. D3 project report.  
  • J. Almgren, R. Carlsson, H. Erkkonen, J. Fredriksson, S. Møller, H. Rydgård, M. Österberg, K. Bötschi, and M. Fjeld. 2005. Tangible User Interface for Chemistry Education: Portability, and Database. Linköping University, SIGRAD 2005, PP. 19-24.   
  • M. Fjeld, D. Hobi, L. Winterthaler, B. Voegtli, and P. Juchli. 2004. Teaching Electronegativity and Dipole Moment in a TUI. Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Advanced Learning Technologies (ICALT 2004). PP. 792-795.  
  • M. Fjeld, B. Voegtli. 2002. Augmented Chemistry: An Interactive Educational Workbench. In Proceedings of the IEEE and ACM International Symposium on Mixed and Augmented Reality (ISMAR 2002). PP. 259-260.   
Project Status

No current activity

Former workers: Joakim Almgren, Martin Ejdestig, Henrik Erkkonen, Jonas Fredriksson, Henrik Holm, Tobias Johansson, Jakob Kemi, Eddie Larsson, Sanne Møller, Henrik Rydgård, Daniel Svensson, Mattias Österberg,

Future plans: No current plans