The 3 figures on this page introduce an approach to visualizing and interpreting people's collaborative interaction called interaction geography.

This 1st figure illustrates how a 6-year-old boy’s (Blake’s) seemingly erratic movement patterns in a museum gallery space are actually intentional efforts to engage and learn. For example, the figure highlights Blake’s repeated and eventually successful efforts to lead his sister's fiancé Adhir on a pedaogical "tour" of other exhibits.


This 2nd figure illustrates methods of interaction geography that include: Mondrian Transcription, a method to map people's movement and conversation over space and time, and the Interaction Geography Slicer (IGS), a dynamic visualization tool that supports new forms of interaction and multi-modal analysis. The figure uses these methods to show how The Bluegrass Family, a family of professional and aspiring Bluegrass musicians that include Blake and Adhir, is intimately and repeatedly engaged with a semi-circular set of exhibits dedicated to Hank Williams, Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs, Bill Monroe and Maybelle Carter (the family’s heroes).



This 3rd figure demonstrates some of the comparative possibilities of the Interaction Geography Slicer (IGS), The figure shows the physical movement of 4 different families (columns) in three gallery spaces (rows) over space and time. The Taylor Swift Family did not visit the Rotunda Gallery. All movement in each gallery space is thus shown across a floor plan of the museum.

Project Publications:

Shapiro, B.R., Hall, R. and Owens, D. (2017). Developing & Using Interaction Geography in a Museum. International Journal of Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning, 12(4), 377-399.

Ben Rydal Shapiro and Rogers Hall. 2018. Personal Curation in a Museum. In Proceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction,Vol. 2, CSCW, Article 158 (November 2018). ACM, New York, NY. 22 pages.

This ongoing work is made possible by wonderful collaborations with our museum partners, many generous museum visitors and families who participated in this research, Vanderbilt University's Space, Learning & Mobility Lab and the National Science Foundation.