The two-year Interface Culture graduate program provides insight into the artistic/scientific treatment and development of interactive media. In particular, the program focuses on the development of human-machine, human-human and machine-machine interaction and their application in art, research, design, industry and entertainment.
The program investigates and provides training in the following activities: software and hardware design for intuitive and wireless interfaces, multi-modal interaction, tangible interfaces, auditory interfaces, ubiquitous computing, mobile art, fashionable technologies, web-based interaction, social interaction, MR, VR and intelligent environments, interactive games and robotic interfaces. The program also delivers in-depth knowledge on artistic/scientific theory and publication strategies, allowing graduates to become active developers and researchers of new interface designs.
Potential activities include careers in media design (e.g. interaction design, interface design, interactive environments, telecommunication design, web-based interaction, computer game design and development), media art (e.g. interactive art, sound environments, stage-based interaction, mobile art, robotic art, software art, bio art), multi-media realization (e.g. exhibition design and organization) and edutainment, hybrid media, emerging careers, and research on interaction and HCI.
An interface generally describes the layer between human and machine, whereby the human user undertakes interaction as a means of operating and influencing the software and hardware components of a digital system. An interface thus enables human beings to communicate with digital technologies as well as to generate, receive and exchange data. Examples of interfaces in very widespread use are the mouse-keyboard interface and graphical user interfaces. In recent years, though, we have witnessed rapid developments in the direction of more intuitive and more seamless interface designs; the fields of research that have emerged include ubiquitous computing, intelligent environments, tangible user interfaces, auditory interfaces, VR and AR-based interaction, multi-modal interaction (camera-based interaction, voice-driven interaction, gesture-based interaction), robotic interfaces, natural interfaces, artistic and metaphoric interfaces.
Artists in the field of interactive art have been conducting research on human-machine interaction for a number of years now. By means of artistic, intuitive, conceptual, social and critical forms of interaction design, they have shown how digital processes can become essential elements of the artistic process. Ars Electronica and in particular the Prix Ars Electronica‘s Interactive Art category launched in 1991 has had a powerful impact on this dialogue and played an active role in promoting ongoing development in this field of research.
The Interface Cultures program is based upon this know-how. It is an artistic-scientific course of study to give budding media artists and media theoreticians solid training in creative and innovative interface design. Artistic design in these areas includes interactive art, net art, software art, robotic art, sound & noise art, games & storytelling, mobile art, as well as new hybrid fields such as bio & nano art. It is precisely this combination of technical know-how, interdisciplinary research and a creative artistic-scientific approach to a task that makes it possible to develop new, creative interfaces that engender progressive and innovative artistic-creative applications for media art, media design, media research and communication.