AR-JigMahoro Anabuki, Richard Whitney, Jason Alonso, James Gouldstone, Angela Chang, Hiroshi Ishii / 2006


AR-Jig is a new handheld tangible user interface for 3D digital modeling. AR-Jig has a pin array that displays a 2D physical curve coincident with a contour of a digitally-displayed 3D form. AR-Jig allows for 3D digital form modification by pin array manipulation, since the 2D physical curve is synchronized with the 3D form. A user can deform a 3D digital surface by manipulating a 2D control curve, which is a popular method in conventional CAD modeling (e.g. model makers often make modifications in planes BOTTOM, TOP, or SIDE views, then extrude them to make 3D shapes).

In contrast to traditional tangible interfaces, which physically embody the entirety of data, this project leaves the majority of the data in the digital domain but gives physicality to any portion of the larger digital dataset via a handheld tool. This intersection of tangible and digital tools results in the ability to flexibly manipulate digital artifacts both tangibly and virtually.

We implemented the first prototype of AR-Jig that has twelve in-line pins with positions manipulated by hand, measured by sensors, and actuated by motors. The pins physically display a contour of a 3D digital form seen through a head mounted display (HMD).