Designing Microgestural Interactions is a study on touchless gesture interactions and their use in future interfaces.

Through the emergence of ever more intelligent devices and the progressive technological development, the way we interact with devices surrounding us and our environment will change in the future. The implementation of touchless interactions into everyday life may become the next paradigm shift in interface design.

The challenge

In this context, we have conducted a comprehensive study on the conception and use of touchless gesture interactions. We wanted to find out how we have to design touchless interactions to be intuitive, easy to use and how they can be applied in a real use case situation.


For our research, we designed microgestures from the ground up, both the motion sequence and the function triggered with it. In order to test and evaluate the developed microgestures, we created various functional prototypes. For the realization of the prototypes, we selected the motion capture camera Leap Motion as a tracking tool. With the functional prototypes, we conducted interviews and usability-tests.


While testing the usability of each prototype respectively microgesture, we focused on six criteria. With the gathered data about the criteria and the gained insights from the interviews, the microgestures were accordingly adjusted and improved.

Advanced Prototypes

We eventually applied the revised microgestures to real use cases to see how they work out in everyday use. To simulate an everyday use we applied gesture-control interfaces to a living-room-like setting. Within this setting, we installed an AppleTV and a light, which both can be controlled by using touchless gesture interactions.
The light can be controlled by using the tap gesture to turn it on and off or by using the drag and drop gesture to dim the light. For the AppleTV we utilized the gestures to navigate through the User Interface. The slide gesture was used to navigate horizontally, the scroll gesture to navigate vertically. With a tap on the left or the right side of his finger, the user can move through the navigation hierarchy.