Ivy: exploring spatially situated visual programming for authoring and understanding intelligent environments

Barrett Ens, Fraser Anderson, Tovi Grossman, Michelle Annett, Pourang Irani, George Fitzmaurice

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperResearchpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


The availability of embedded, digital systems has led to a multitude of interconnected sensors and actuators being distributed among smart objects and built environments. Programming and understanding the behaviors of such systems can be challenging given their inherent spatial nature. To explore how spatial and contextual information can facilitate the authoring of intelligent environments, we introduce Ivy, a spatially situated visual programming tool using immersive virtual reality. Ivy allows users to link smart objects, insert logic constructs, and visualize real-time data flows between real-world sensors and actuators. Initial feedback sessions show that participants of varying skill levels can successfully author and debug programs in example scenarios.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGraphics Interface 2017 - Proceedings
Subtitle of host publicationEdmonton, Alberta 16–19 May 2017
EditorsElmar Eisemann, Scott Bateman
Place of PublicationOntario Canada
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9780994786821
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes
EventGraphics Interface 2017 - Edmonton, Canada
Duration: 16 May 201719 May 2017
Conference number: 43rd


ConferenceGraphics Interface 2017
Abbreviated titleGI 2017
Internet address


  • Immersive analytics
  • Internet of things
  • Mixed reality
  • Spatial interaction
  • Virtual reality
  • Visual programming language

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