Playful Interfaces: Introduction and History

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review


    In this short survey we have some historical notes about human-computer interface development with an emphasis on interface technology that has allowed us to design playful interactions with applications. The applications do not necessarily have to be entertainment applications. We can have playful interfaces to applications that have educational goals or that aim at behavior change, whether it is about change of attitude or opinion, social behavior change or physical behavior. For the developer and the designer of these applications and their interfaces there is no need any more to assume that, in addition to focusing on the application, the user has to pay attention to manipulating a mouse, using the keyboard and monitoring the screen. Smart sensors and actuators embedded in a user’s physical environment, objects, wearables and mobile devices can monitor a user, detect preferences and emotions and can re-actively and pro-actively adapt the environment and the behavior of its actuators to demands of the user or changing conditions. In this way interface technology can be employed in such a way that the emphasis is not on offering means to get tasks done in the most efficient way, but on presenting playful interaction opportunities to applications that provide fun, excitement, challenges, and entertainment. Clearly, many applications that have more serious goals than ‘just’ providing fun can profit from this interface technology as well. In this introductory chapter we shortly survey the chapters in this book that show the many applications of these playful interfaces.
    Original languageUndefined
    Title of host publicationPlayful User Interfaces
    Subtitle of host publicationGaming Media and Social Effects
    EditorsA. Nijholt
    Place of PublicationBerlin
    Number of pages21
    ISBN (Electronic)978-981-4560-96-2
    ISBN (Print)978-981-4560-95-5
    Publication statusPublished - 18 Feb 2014

    Publication series

    NameGaming Media and Social Effects
    PublisherSpringer Verlag
    ISSN (Print)2197-9685


    • IR-90558
    • Mobile devices
    • Human computer interaction
    • Games
    • Gesture interfaces
    • Whole body interaction
    • Entertainment computing
    • Ubiquitous Computing
    • User Experience
    • Persuasion
    • Pervasive computing
    • Playful interfaces
    • Tangible Interfaces
    • Behavior change
    • Exertion interfaces
    • METIS-303979
    • EWI-24187

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