Publication: There and Back again: Cross-Display Object Movement in Multi-Display Environments

Multi-display environments (MDEs) are now becoming common, and are becoming more complex, with more displays and more types of display in the environment. One crucial requirement specific to MDEs is that users must be able to move objects from one display to another; this cross-display movement is a frequent and fundamental part of interaction in any application that spans two or more display surfaces. Although many cross-display movement techniques exist, the differences between MDEs--the number, location, and mixed orientation of displays, and the characteristics of the task they are being designed for--require that interaction techniques be chosen carefully to match the constraints of the particular environment. As a way to facilitate interaction design in MDEs, we present a taxonomy that classifies cross-display object movement techniques according to three dimensions: the referential domain that determines how displays are selected, the relationship of the input space to the display configuration, and the control paradigm for executing the movement. These dimensions are based on a descriptive model of the task of cross-display object movement. The taxonomy also provides an analysis of current research that designers and researchers can use to understand the differences between categories of interaction techniques.




Miguel Nacenta
University of St Andrews, University of Saskatchewan, University of Calgary
Carl Gutwin
University of Saskatchewan
Dzimitri Aliakseyeu Sriram Subramanian
University of Bristol


Nacenta, M.A., Gutwin, C., Aliakseyeu, D., Subramanian, S. 2009. There and Back again: Cross-Display Object Movement in Multi-Display Environments. In Journal of Human-Computer Interaction, vol. 24 no. 1, 170-229. accessible from: DOI=10.1080/07370020902819882.


@article {155-JHCI-Miguel-Web-version-7_03,
author= {Miguel Nacenta and Carl Gutwin and Dzimitri Aliakseyeu and Sriram Subramanian},
title= {There and Back again: Cross-Display Object Movement in Multi-Display Environments},
booktitle= {Journal of Human-Computer Interaction},
year= {2009},
volume= {24},
number= {1},
pages= {170-229},
note= {accessible from:}