Children discover the world through play. Playing shapes human mental and physiological development, social relationships, identities, and learning processes. The emergence of the computer as an interactive medium has elevated the importance of computer play and computer games, which are of particular interest commercially.
Digital technologies increasingly inform play opportunities, from creating imaginary worlds to enabling new social interactions (for example, distance communication). Physical computing brings a tangible component back into computer-mediated play. Games, as a form of intentional play, are interactive by nature, as every player is a participant and cannot remain a passive observer. Games touch on almost every area of interaction design, starting from social interactions between numerous players to HCI issues when it comes to designing the actual physical or virtual interfaces.
The workshop was lead by Jan-Christoph Zoels, a senior partner at Experientia and senior associate professor at the Interaction Design Institute.