Approaches to auditory interface design - Lessons from computer games
Coleman, Graeme W
Newell, Alan F
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The computer game has begun to establish itself within the wider entertainment industry, and has thus attracted considerable interest from more general interaction designers. However, while computer game audio has become increasingly sophisticated, it remains a discipline largely overlooked by the research community. We begin by outlining similarities between each discipline, highlighting those which we believe provide interesting opportunities for designers of auditory interfaces. We also suggest that, through an understanding of the everyday practices of computer game sound designers and their colleagues within the industry, the process of sound design for alternative forms of interfaces can be considerably informed. To discover and understand some of these practices, we present our experiences conducting a field study using ethnographic methods with a major UK-based computer game developer. We highlight discoveries which we believe are pertinent for the design of auditory interfaces and thus merit further research. Our study forms part of our wider research to develop a grounded theory (i.e. a theory conceived via the data collected during the field study) to understand the reality of sound design within the computer games industry, relationships to the design of more general interfaces and thus how we approach the design of contemporary auditory interfaces.