One of the best talks at CHI this year was by Chris Harrison of Carnegie Mellon, who presented work on what he calls “kineticons” — applying motion to icons and GUI elements of all scales. This is not animated icons per se, but motion applied to static icons. He came up with 39 kineticon motions and then asked 200 Amazon Mechanical Turk workers what they thought the motions meant. Among the interesting results was that “blowing in the wind” was a better indicator of movability than the iPhone springboard’s “jiggle” motion.

Apple has been a pioneer in using this type of motion to convey meaning, but Chris neatly shows how many more possibilities there are.

Leave a Comment