Video analysis for evaluating music interaction: musical tabletops

Xambó, Anna; Laney, Robin; Dobbyn, Chris and Jordà, Sergi (2013). Video analysis for evaluating music interaction: musical tabletops. In: Holland, S.; Wilkie, K.; Mulholland, P. and Seago, A. eds. Music and Human-Computer Interaction. Springer Series on Cultural Computing. London, UK: Springer Verlag, pp. 241–258.




There is little evaluation of musical tabletops for music performance, and current approaches tend to have little consideration of social interaction. However, in collaborative settings, social aspects such as coordination, communication, or musical engagement between collaborators are fundamental for a successful performance. After an overview of the use of video in music interaction research as a convenient method for understanding interaction between people and technology, we present three empirical examples of approaches to video analysis applied to musical tabletops: Firstly, an exploratory approach to give informal insight towards understanding collaboration in new situations. Secondly, a participatory design approach oriented to improve an interface design by getting feedback from the user experience. Thirdly, a quantitative approach, towards understanding collaboration by considering frequencies of interaction events. The aim of this chapter is to provide a useful insight into how to evaluate musical tabletops using video as a data source. Furthermore, this overview can shed light on understanding shareable interfaces in a wider HCI context of group creativity and multi-player interaction.

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