Tangible Slider

A Capacitive Touch Slider Enabling Intuitive Sidebar Manipulation and Control

Sheng Kai Tang
User Experience Design, ASUS


Sidebar is a kind of widely used component for most window-based applications. A sidebar is defined as a container where application shortcuts are located. Currently, a sidebar is called out from hidden by pointing the cursor at a hot-area or a hot-edge. After calling out a sidebar, users can further point at a shortcut icon and click to trigger. In this project, such a conventional interaction model is replaced by a “Tangible Touch Slider” to increase the usability. The Tangible Touch Slider is a horizontal sensible area with lighting feedbacks on the C part of a laptop computer. By touching on this sensible area, the related sidebar on the screen will be called out; by sliding on it, user can switch among shortcut icons; by releasing from the sensible area, the selected shortcut will be triggered. After a preliminary test based on GOMS, this new interaction model can save up to 1.5 seconds especially when users are doing typing oriented works.