Making a financial time machine: a multitouch application to enable interactive 3-D visualization of distant savings goals

K. C. Scott-Brown, O. Ahrani Dahrani, N. Tandas, H. Mclaughlin, R. Henderson, D. Cernagovs, J. Turner, H. Tarbert

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

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Financial planning and decision making for the general public continues to vex and perplex in equal measure. Whilst the tools presented by a typical desktop computer should make the task easier, the recent financial crisis confirms the increasing difficulty that people have in calculating the benefits of deferring consumption for future gains (i.e. Saving). We present an interactive concept demonstration for Microsoft SurfaceTM that tackles two of the key barriers to saving decision making. Firstly we show an interface that avoid the laborious writing down or inputting of data and instead embodies the cognitive decision of allocation of resources in a physical gesture based interface, where the scale of the investment or expenditure correlates with the scale of the gesture. Second we show how a fast-forward based animation can demonstrate the impact of small increments in savings to a long term savings goal in a strategy game-based, interactive format. The platform uses custom software (XNATM format) as opposed to the more usual WPFTM format found on Surface applications. This enables dynamic 3-D graphical icons to be used to maximize the interactive appeal of the interface. Demonstration and test trial feedback indicates that this platform can be adapted to suit the narrative of individual purchasing decisions to inform educate diverse user groups about the long term consequences of small financial decisions.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of HCI 2010
Subtitle of host publicationthe 24th British HCI Group Annual Conference, University of Abertay, Dundee, UK
EditorsTom McEwan, Lachlan MacKinnon
PublisherBCS, The Chartered Institute for IT
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2010
Event24th British HCI Group Annual Conference: People and Computers XXIV Games are a Serious Business - University of Abertay, Dundee, United Kingdom
Duration: 6 Sep 201010 Sep 2010
Conference number: 24th

Publication series

NameElectronic Workshops in Computing
ISSN (Print)1477-9358


Conference24th British HCI Group Annual Conference
Abbreviated titleHCI 2010
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
OtherThe current state of HCI is an amazing topology of interlinked topics and techniques, with ideas bouncing between and across other domains. What was once the struggle to identify and encourage the adoption of good practice, has grown into a massive multiplayer game, a global endeavour that makes vast forests of business and commerce possible and viable, and that potentially empowers and sustainably enables the disadvantaged in every society. The game has indeed become a serious business.


  • Microsoft Surface
  • XNA
  • Economics
  • Human factors
  • Artistic and aesthetic aspects of interaction and interface design
  • Computer games design and development
  • Interface agents and interface characters
  • Multimodal interfaces
  • Information visualization and presentation
  • Innovative interface design
  • New interaction techniques and devices
  • Play and the use of play
  • WPF
  • Design


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