Cube buddy

by Ozge Genc and Alberto Tacconi

Cube Buddy is a time-based social game. It aims to provide an experience to the user that comprises building teamwork, creating harmony, understanding gestures, and strengthening trust between people. The substantial goal of the game is to create a continuous movement with the cube during ten seconds. On the other hand the holistic goal of the game is to create a harmony between users as time passes.
Cube Buddy visualizes the movement through LED system within movement detection.
Interface and Interaction Modality
Cube Buddy is a wireless product. The shape of the product is cube. The opposed two surfaces with gaps for placing user’s finger. Each gap is placed on the center of each surface. The remaining four surfaces are for illuminating LED system. Cube Buddy can play by two people; to play the game user’s forefingers are need to placed in the gaps. Then by they need to start moving the cube. When they start to move the cube, the movement detection system starts-up. If there is a movement at this time, LED system starts-up. For indicating the incremental movement, blue color LED starts-up and its brightness increases. If there is a decrement movement, blue color LED’s brightness decreases. If the users can create a continuous movement during ten second, green color LED starts-up blinking. This means they win the game, else red color LED starts-up blinking and this means they lose the game. Therefore Cube Buddy visualizes the gestural and mental reactions between people and also creates potential balance.

The material of the cube is modeling foam, which is very convenient for Cube Buddy. Because of flexibility of material the cube becomes resistance. Thus the users can drop down and crash the cube somewhere.

Cube Buddy built with an Arduino board Uno and programmed with Arduino software. It contains a dual axis gyroscope for movement detection, two light sensors for finger placement detection, three high power LED (blue, green, red) for indicate the game modes and a 9Volt battery for make the cube independent.

User experience
Cube Buddy is a game for socializing and entertainment. It can play either indoors and outdoors. The functions of artifact are simple and pleasurable. It uses natural interactions as input, which makes the artifact intuitively understandable to user. On the other side this artifact can be adapted into performing arts (pantomime, juggling, dance etc.) and education. Cube Buddy provides to the user potentially customizable system, the technology of the artifact is affordable.

Research and development contexts
The artifact can be familiarized the public with games that based on physical interaction, and also with using open source hardwares and softwares.

Massimo Banzi – Creating Tangible Interfaces, SUPSI, 2011
Interaction Design