Follow the Grass: A Smart Material Interactive Pervasive Display

  • Andrea Minuto
  • Gijs Huisman
  • Anton Nijholt
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7522)


Smart materials offer new possibilities for creating engaging and interesting forms of interaction and ways of displaying information in a material way. In this paper we describe Follow the Grass, a concept of an interactive pervasive display for public spaces. The display will be built up out of a number of blades of grass that are actuated in eight directions using nitinol muscle wires (i.e. a shape-memory alloy). A Microsoft Kinect-based tracking system is employed to detect users’ presence. Follow the Grass can be used for entertainment purposes by displaying animations through movement of the grass, as well as for indoor way-finding and ambient persuasive guidance. We present a number of scenarios with varying scales of interaction, and different applications, followed by a description of the initial hardware design of a single blade of grass and its actuated root. We will give a description of the tracking system, and how it tracks users and is capable of identifying individuals. Finally we will provide suggestions for the further development.


Smart material interface quiet computing ambient organic display 


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Copyright information

© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrea Minuto
    • 1
  • Gijs Huisman
    • 1
  • Anton Nijholt
    • 1
  1. 1.Human Media Interaction GroupUniversity of TwenteEnschedeThe Netherlands

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