Grabbing at an Angle: Menu Selection for Fabric Interfaces

 An embroidered textile sensor for detecting pinch angles.


This paper investigates the pinch angle as a menu selection technique for two-dimensional foldable textile controllers. Based on the principles of marking menus, the selection of a menu item is performed by grabbing a fold at a specific angle, while changing value is performed by rolling the fold between the fingers. In a first experiment, we determined an upper bound for the number of different angles users can reliably grab into a piece of fabric on their forearm. Our results show that users can, without looking at it, reliably grab fabric on their forearm with an average accuracy between 30◦ and 45◦, which would provide up to six different menu options selectable with the initial pinch. In a second experiment, we show that our textile sensor, Grabrics, can detect fold angles at 45◦ spacing with up to 85% accuracy. Our studies also found that user performance and workload are independent of the fabric types that were tested.

Quick Links

Paper (ISWC 16)
LBW (CHI 16)
Smart Textiles research
Project folder [Internal Access]
Funding project: Intuitex
Contact: Nur Hamdan


Relevant Links



  • Nur Al-huda Hamdan, Jeffrey Blum, Florian Heller, Ravi Kanth Kosuru and Jan Borchers. Grabbing at an Angle: Menu Selection for Fabric Interfaces.  In ISWC '16: Proceedings of the 2016 International Symposium on Wearable Computers,September 2016.
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  • Nur Al-huda Hamdan, Florian Heller, Chat Wacharamanotham, Jan Thar and Jan Borchers. Grabrics: A Foldable Two-Dimensional Textile Input Controller.  In Extended Abstracts of the 2016 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI EA '16, pages 2497–2503,May 2016.
    HomepagePDF DocumentBibTeX Entry

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