Making 3D printed objects interactive using wireless accelerometers

Jonathan Hook, Peter Wright, Thomas Nappey, Patrick Olivier, Steve Hodges

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperOther

22 Citations (Scopus)


We present an approach that allows designers and others to quickly and easily make 3D printed objects interactive, without the need for hardware or software expertise and with little modification to an object's physical design. With our approach, a designer simply attaches or embeds small three-axis wireless accelerometer modules into the moving parts of a 3D printed object. A simple graphical user interface is then used to configure the system to interpret the movements of these accelerometers as if they were common physical controls such as buttons or dials. The designer can then associate events generated by these controls with a range of interactive behavior, including web browser and media player control.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCHI 2014 One of a CHInd - Extended Abstracts Toronto, Canada I April 26 – May 1, 2014
Subtitle of host publicationThe 32nd Annual ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
EditorsAlbrecht Schmidt, Tovi Grossman
Place of PublicationNew York NY USA
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)9781450324748
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2014 - Metro Toronto Convention Centre, Toronto, Canada
Duration: 26 Apr 20141 May 2014
Conference number: 32nd (Proceedings)


ConferenceInternational Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2014
Abbreviated titleCHI 2014
Internet address


  • 3D printing
  • Accelerometers
  • Physical computing
  • Rapid prototyping
  • Solder-less electronics
  • Tangible interfaces

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