WindyWall: Exploring Creative Wind Simulations

David Tolley, Thi Ngoc Tram Nguyen, Anthony Tang, Nimesha Ranasinghe, Kensaku Kawauchi, and Ching-Chiuan Yen. (2019). WindyWall: Exploring Creative Wind Simulations. In TEI 2019: International Conference on Tangible and Embedded Interaction 2019, 635–644. Acceptance: 34% - 37/110.


Wind simulations are typically one-off implementations for specific applications. We introduce WindyWall, a platform for creative design and exploration of wind simulations. WindyWall is a three-panel 90-fan array that encapsulates users with 270° of wind coverage. We describe the design and implementation of the array panels, discussing how the panels can be re-arranged, where various wind simulations can be realized as simple effects. To understand how people perceive “wind” generated from WindyWall, we conducted a pilot study of wind magnitude perception using different wind activation patterns from WindyWall. Our findings suggest that: horizontal wind activations are perceived more readily than vertical ones, and that people’s perceptions of wind are highly variable—most individuals will rate airflow differently in subsequent exposures. Based on our findings, we discuss the importance of developing a method for characterizing wind simulations, and provide design directions for others using fan arrays to simulate wind.


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  author = {Tolley, David and Nguyen, Thi Ngoc Tram and Tang, Anthony and Ranasinghe, Nimesha and Kawauchi, Kensaku and Yen, Ching-Chiuan},
  title = {WindyWall: Exploring Creative Wind Simulations},
  booktitle = {TEI 2019: International Conference on Tangible and Embedded Interaction 2019},
  videourl = {},
  pdfurl = {},
  acceptance = {34% - 37/110},
  year = {2019},
  pages = {635-644},
  type = {conference}