Vote with your feet : hyperlocal public polling for urban screens

Steinberger, Fabius (2014) Vote with your feet : hyperlocal public polling for urban screens. Other thesis, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München.


Technological advances have led to an ongoing spread of public displays in urban areas. However, they still mostly show passive content such as commercials and digital signage. Researchers took notice of their potential to spark situated civic discourse in public space and have begun working on interactive public display applications. Attracting people’s attention and providing a low barrier for user participation have been identified as major challenges in their design.

This thesis presents Vote With Your Feet, a hyperlocal public polling tool for urban screens allowing users to express their opinions. Similar to vox populi interviews on TV or polls on news websites, the tool is meant to reflect the mindset of the community on topics such as current affairs, cultural identity and local matters. It shows one Yes/No question at a time and enables users to vote by stepping on one of two tangible buttons on the ground. This user interface was introduced to attract people’s attention and to lower participation barriers. Vote With Your Feet was informed by a user-centred design approach that included a focus group, expert interviews and extensive preliminary user studies in the wild. Deployed at a bus stop, Vote With Your Feet was evaluated in a field study over the course of several days. Observations of people and interviews with 30 participants revealed that the novel interaction technology was perceived as inviting and that Vote With Your Feet can spark discussions among co-located people.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 66824
Item Type: Thesis (Other)
Refereed: No
Additional Information: This thesis reports on a study conducted as part of a research internship at the Urban Informatics Research Lab. More information at
Keywords: polling, voting, ubiquitous computing, urban computing, civic engagement, public displays, urban screens, tangible media, urban informatics, community engagement, situated engagement, in the wild
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > DISTRIBUTED COMPUTING (080500) > Ubiquitous Computing (080504)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES (080000) > INFORMATION SYSTEMS (080600) > Computer-Human Interaction (080602)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > DESIGN PRACTICE AND MANAGEMENT (120300) > Digital and Interaction Design (120304)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Design
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Institution: Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
Deposited On: 03 Feb 2014 01:51
Last Modified: 24 Apr 2014 02:27

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