MIGS 2010: Harmonix's Ryan Challinor thinks so, as he details the studio's rulebook for gestural UI design

Should Kinect UI be standardised?

Harmonix’s Ryan Challinor has suggested that introducing a standardised UI model for Kinect titles would be a largely positive move.

Asked by a member of the audience at his MIGS 2010 tech keynote if he felt it would be good to see a standardised UI model emerge for Kinect titles, the coder from Harmonix’s UI and metagame team said: "I hope one does come up. Our system would work for every type of game."

He added: "It should be standardised. If UI wasn’t [standardised], it would be like a mouse working differently on every computer."

Challinor also confirmed that in the development of Kinect Microsoft proposed a standard API for UI which eventually found its way to the cutting room floor.

The session, titled ‘Developing Gesture Based UI Navigation Using Kinect’, told the story of designing and prototyping the UI for Dance Central, and detailed a seven point rule book Harmonix and Challinor created as part of the process.

The ‘rules’ for making better gestural UI for Kinect are as follows:

• Kinect has jitter – be forgiving
• Don’t use a cursor
• You can’t rely on engagement and disengagement (traditional button pressing will not work as the player is always in ‘contact’ with the UI)
• Arm extension does not work
• The UI needs a fast learning curve
• Long lists need to be continuous
• Teach the user, rather than finding out what they want

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