hover widgets

microsoft research


patrick baudisch
       hover widgets

(a) A cursor moves through the Hover Widget tunnel.
(b) The tunnel is repositioned if the cursor leaves its boundaries.
(c) The Hover Widget can be activated once it reaches the activation zone, shown in red.

Hover Widgets are a new technique for increasing the capabilities of pen-based interfaces. Hover Widgets are implemented by using the pen movements above the display surface, in the pen tracking state. Short gestures while hovering followed by a pen down access the Hover Widgets, which can be used to activate localized interface widgets, such as marking menus or virtual scroll rings. By using the tracking state movements, Hover Widgets create a new command layer which is clearly distinct from the input layer of a pen interface. In a formal experiment Hover Widgets had a greater time cost associated with their selection than a toolbar icon, but half of the users still preferred to use the Hover Widgets.

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In collaboration with Tovi Grossman (principal investigator), Ken Hinckley, and Maneesh Agrawala