Topics in Experimental Interfaces & Physical Computing

Instructor: Jung Hyun Moon
Office Hours Sign Up

Tuesday/Thursday: 1:45-3:00pm
Friday Lab: 1:45-3:00pm
Class Room: 818


Kinetic Interfaces is an introductory course that highlights on programming and designing an interaction with body movement, which will enable the students to understand the fundamentals of emerging kinetic user interfaces. Everyday we become more familiar with interfaces where our movement serves as input to control interactive media, and kinetic user interfaces allow users to interact with computing devices through the motion of bodies.

Students in this course will use Computer Vision and motion tracking tools and techniques to create kinetic interfaces that exploit the body’s movement capacity to control software and hardware systems. Both practical and creative applications of kinetic interfaces are to be investigated as students are challenged to design their own solutions. Webcams, the Leap Motion Controller and the Microsoft Kinect will all be considered as input devices. Students will be introduced to the topics of pixel manipulation, as well as face, hand, blob and skeletal tracking. Projection mapping, a technique that turns objects or surfaces within an environment into dynamic display surfaces, will be explored as an output method.



The class uses Processing and requires Interaction Lab or similar programming background. C++ language in OpenFrameworks is also encouraged.


Learning Objectives

Upon completing the course, students will:

  • Understand images and pixels (2 dimensional data type)
  • Learn programmatic methods for the manipulation of images and videos
  • Learn the diverse methods of motion tracking
  • Apply the motion tracking technology to user interfaces
  • Create a practical or artistic kinetic interfaces
  • Gain knowledge to discuss about meaningful and effective interaction design



Attendance & Participation: 30%
Weekly Assignments: 20%
Midterm Project: 15%
Final Project: 35%

It follows the grading practices of NYU Shanghai.


Attendance, Participation and Classroom Policies

Attendance in all class sessions is mandatory. It is expected that students will come to all classes, unless the instructor has been notified beforehand. Unexcused absences or repeated tardiness will affect the participation grade. Three absences will result in a failing grade. If you are going to miss a class, it is your responsibility to make up the material you miss. Please let the instructor know ahead of time so that he/she can help you determine how to make up the material.

NYU policy permits members of any religious group to absent themselves from classes without penalty when required for compliance with their religious obligations.

This class will be highly participatory with lectures being very conversational. Active participation is essential and expected in this course.

This course relies heavily on punctuality. The class starts promptly at the scheduled start time, students are expected to be on time.

The use of mobile devices or personal electronic equipment is not permitted. Mobile devices must be turned off or silenced and put away during class. Anyone who is observed doing activities not related to the class, such as recreational browsing of the internet, including all social media websites, email and instant messaging, game playing, and work for other classes, will result in a reduction of your participation points.

Laptops are only allowed for note taking, in class work, as well as relevant research only. Your laptop should always be closed whenever a fellow student is presenting.

No student may record any classroom activity for a personal use without express written consent from the instructor. If you have a disability such that you need to record or tape classroom activities, you should contact the instructor to request an appropriate accommodation.


Office Hours

By appointment at 6-8pm on Tuesday and Thursday.

The instructor is also available via email and will respond to students’ questions as quickly as possible. Asking for help is strongly encouraged.