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Exertion Interfaces




Sports over a Distance

Breakout for Two




Alternative Sports

Alternative Games

Transmitting Exertion


Technical Details

Ball Detection




Prisoner's Dilemma





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When a team outgrows individual performance and learns team confidence, excellence becomes a reality.

Joe Paterno
American Heritage, 1998

Sports over a DistanceLet the games begin!

Why not combine the advantages of telecommunication technology in bridging distance, and those of sports in facilitating social introductions and fun?
Asserting that sports and games have these socializing effects, a game environment can be a valuable augmentation of what current telecollaboration tools try to accomplish in terms of social interaction. If physical exertion can put the user in a heightened state of arousal that supports bonding, it makes sense to leverage the same kind of arousal in a distributed setting. For example, if strangers meet over a networked environment for the first time, a game can break the ice, as it provides rules to follow, an activity or experience to share, and something to talk about.

In order to test our hypothesis, we used these findings to develop a system which allows two players in remote locations to play sports together. As an example of an Exertion Interface, it requires physical effort to play and encourages mastering specific skills. Furthermore, the design aims to make it fun to play and also to support interactions between the players.

Decision on a Ball Sport

We decided to model our system on a proven Exertion Interface: the use of a ball in sports. Players kick, throw, bat, balance, strike, hurl, pass, dribble and shoot a ball in a vast range of sports. Games like tennis or volleyball have the players on two different parts of the field, allowing only the ball to cross the boundary or net. Based on these examples, we decided to create a game which keeps distinct parts of the field for each player, supporting the goal of a functional long-distance game.