In FLASHED, we will discover a new technology in the field of flexible displays. A major problem of flexible displays is still the lack of interactivity, because none of the market-ready touch solutions are flexible (bendable). Therefore, one major goal of FLASHED is the development of novel, flexible touchscreen solutions, covering aspects like cost-effectiveness (all-printed), sustainability (material recycling and end-of-life disposal) and energy-efficiency (self-sustaining sensor arrays). Moreover, the FLASHED project puts strong emphasis on user-friendly interfaces. The FLASHED device itself consists of a flexible display, a touchscreen layer based on a pressure sensing touch array (utilizing ferroelectric polymers) and a haptic/acoustic feedback layer based on a relaxor ferrolectric material.
We explored the design space for communicating surface gestures to users of textile interfaces by experimenting with the interfaces’ physical design and affordances. First, we created a collection of functional and non-functional textile samples. Their development was based on three aspects: design, fabrication, and sensing. Second, we reflected on created samples and their characteristics contrasting different designs and speculating on why some work better than others. Our main findings and insights are presented in five clusters: ergonomics, visual affordances, perception of textures, the direction of movement, and the economic usage of design elements.