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AR Library


Concept Development

AR Interaction Design

User Testing


3D Modeling

Video Making


Cinema 4D




Columbia 2018 Spring

User-Centered Design

Teammate: Qi Yang
Instructor: Agnes Chang


Using Augmented reality to manipulate the degree of publicity & privacy of spaces in Avery Library. By designing visual cues and overlaying them on the real space, specific human sensory reactions are triggered and certain behaviours are suggested. Thus achieving better spatial flexibility and diverse human behaviours in the space.


A. Visual Cues As Behaviour Triggers

Human behaviours are heavily influenced by visual cues. In the augmented reality world, visual cues have the opportunity of being more flexible and personal. Certain visual language may more easily trigger people to behave in a certain way.

Affordance Diagram-01.jpg

Visual Cue Triggering Sensory Reaction


B. Public & Private Landscape


Manipulating Private & Public Relationship

The quality of physical space is fixed once the construction finishes. However, with the advance of AR, the space is now changeable. Publicity and privacy are two important topics in the architecture discipline that determines the usage of the space. We are proposing that, in changing the conceptual landscape of the publicity and privacy of the space, space could be multi-functional according to different demands of the readers. 

Public: The bigger amount of people in a unit square space, more frequency of visits, the activity of sharing, more noise

Private: The smaller amount of people in a unit square space, less frequency of visits, no activity of sharing, quieter


C. Findings in Avery Library

After close observation in the Avery library, we found that:

1. Students need a certain degree of privacy and publicity.
2. Some students are easily distracted by messages, the internet, or the surrounding
environment like people walking by.
3. Some students come in pairs, showing the tendency of studying together/sharing ideas.
4. Students prefer to study in a better environment even if that is more crowded.

Final presentaion_Serena and Yang-4.jpg

​Sit at an interval

Unused/uncomfortable space

No sharing

Service space interrupts reading space

Need privacy

Easily disturbed


D. Provocations

After analyzing the problems when using spaces in Avery library, we draw some scenarios imaging people all have accessibility to AR: Creating individual territory in a large table so students may have certain privacy whenever they prefer; Allowing readers to shear ideas. Creating a bonus system (your effort would contribute to the beauty of the starry sky) so that the readers would have more incentive to study. Using coverage to hide some behaviours(like sleeping)when privacy is needed. The fundamental issue is about tuning the degree of publicity & privacy in a certain space.


Individual territory in a large table


Contribute to the collective environment


Sharing ideas with others


Creating privacy


E. Personas

Rather than creating individual persona, we mapped different user types on four axes to describe the user's reading habits.



1. People have various needs for publicity and privacy for their ideal study place, different from person to person even from time to time. Public, Semi-public, solitary, with a certain degree of noise...
2. People have the need to share their sparkles or ideas. Most people prefer to share ideas in semi-public spaces like the studio. Library for them is a place for concentrated problem-solving. Also, some people don’t like to share their ideas instantly, they trend to share their idea through writing instead of talking.



F. Prototype - Private & Public landscape

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The hallway is the most public space in the library. People passing by would create noise thus affect people sitting nearby. By applying virtual grass in the hallway, we hope people would step slightly on the floor so that they would mind their behaviors. The step would turn to red if the sound is too loud. The public(noisy) is tuned to the private(quite).

The large reading table in the library could accommodate more than 10 readers. Some people may feel uncomfortable when there are too many readers surrounds him/her. People may have the possibility of creating their own reading rooms with their preferred environments. The reading experience could be more immersive. The public(no privacy) is tuned to the private(with preferred privacy).

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The bookshelves take the function of book storage. Because of the narrow space between the shelves, readers won't stay too long after picking up their books. We are thinking about revitalizing the space between the shelves, to take the function of sharing reviews. Rose is planted on the books as a medium for students to exchange reading reviews. A community of communication is fertilized. The private(no sharing) is tuned to the public(sharing).

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People come to the library because of the good environment. We chose the image of "sky", that each person's study time could turn to stars, so every effort you made in the reading could contribute to the overall beauty of the collective environment. The public space have a bonus system and increases a sense of communication. The private(no sharing) is tuned to the public(sharing).

New Image test in paper.jpg


G. Story Board

What would be the user journey like?

new sketch2.jpg

Sharing Reading Reviews

new sketch1.jpg

Way-finding system that reduces noise

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Large reading table divided into personal cabins


H. Prototype

Two simple prototypes is depicting here: 

A. Reading reviews sharing system - Create reading community

Roses contains reviews written from the previous students. By picking up the flowers, the reviews will unfold.

B. Study encouraging system - Contribute to the collective environment

A star will shoot up after you study more than 30mins. Your diligent also contributes to the collectively more beautiful environment in the Avery library.


I. User-Test

Wizard-of-oz prototyping method - Projecting animation on the table/ground/wall to simulate AR experience. During which we found that people feel frustrated when they found that the images are faked.

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Karen: “I feel frustrated because I can see it but cannot touch it.”
(She tried multiple unexpected ways to interact with the rose. She waved hard at the rose but unfortunately, nothing happened of course)


J. Visual Cue in Digital Space

Affordance Diagram-01.jpg

1. Maybe it's better to tell users it's not "real" in the first place to avoid the feeling of being cheated. 

2. The object itself doesn't matter that much, the way it interacts with people defines what it is and that will influence the behaviors of users.

3. Rather than mimicking objects in the real world, could we create a new world in the digital environment using visual cue?


K. Prototype - Realtime AR

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