I have finally got around to putting this online. My PhD thesis, titled Collaborating Through Sounds: Audio-only Interaction With Diagrams, was examined on the 14th of December 2010 and passed with minor corrections. It’s now in its final polished form, which you can download as a pdf from here.
The central question that I sought to answer in this thesis is whether “sound” or the auditory modality can be a practical medium of collaborative interaction with diagrammatically represented information.
The work asks and explores answers to questions such as: why is a diagram a good form of representation? How should a diagram be translated from graphical to auditory form? How do we design effective interaction with audio representations of diagrams? And how do we work together on audio diagrams when we can only hear each other?
The thesis uses theoretical and empirical investigation and analysis to compile a set of design recommendations aimed to help interaction designers when they use/incorporate audio to build systems that support single and multiple users interaction with and through technology.
Please feel free to get in touch if any of this is of interest to you, or if you would like to find out more about my research.