Max Pfeiffer

Max Pfeiffer
Appelstr. 9A
30167 Hannover
Room 909
+49 (511) 762-14153


Max Pfeiffer is a researcher in the Human-Computer Interaction Group at the University of Hanover. His research interests are in leaning movements and computer support systems for movements, HCI in sports, and autonomous flyable vehicle interaction. During his studies he focused on Software Systems Engineering and Human-Computer Interaction at the University of Duisburg-Essen. He worked for more than 5 years as a student research assistant and conducted several projects with the research group for Pervasive Computing and User Interface Engineering. In 2009 he did a surface table project at the Mobiquitous Lab at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow. After receiving his Master’s degree, he joined Software Engineering, esp. Mobile Applications Group at the paluno The Ruhr Institute for Software Technology as a researcher. There he worked on and led a cloud computing enabling project with Deutsche Telekom Innovation Laboratories. In addition, he conducted and lectured in different classes and was in the back office team of the ECSA in 2011. In 2012 he joined the Human-Computer Interaction Group at the University of Hannover.


Full Papers

Cruise Control for Pedestrians: Controlling Walking Direction using Electrical Muscle Stimulation Max Pfeiffer, Tim Duente, Stefan Schneegass, Florian Alt, Michael Rohs Proc. of CHI 2015
Pedestrian navigation systems require users to perceive, interpret, and react to navigation information. This can tax cognition as navigation information competes with information from the real world. We propose actuated navigation, a new kind of pedestrian navigation in which the user does not need to attend to the navigation task at all. An actuation signal is directly sent to the human motor system to influence walking direction. To achieve this goal we stimulate the sartorius muscle using electrical muscle stimulation. The rotation occurs during the swing phase of the leg and can easily be counteracted. The user therefore stays in control. We discuss the properties of actuated navigation and present a lab study on identifying basic parameters of the technique as well as an outdoor study in a park. The results show that our approach changes a user's walking direction by about 16 degree/m on average and that the system can successfully steer users in a park with crowded areas, distractions, obstacles, and uneven ground.
Let Me Grab This : A Comparison of EMS and Vibration for Haptic Feedback in Free-Hand Interaction Max Pfeiffer, Stefan Schneegass, Florian Alt, Michael Rohs Augmented Human
Free-hand interaction with large displays is getting more common, for example in public settings and exertion games. Adding haptic feedback offers the potential for more realis- tic and immersive experiences. While vibrotactile feedback is well known, electrical muscle stimulation (EMS) has not yet been explored in free-hand interaction with large displays. EMS offers a wide range of different strengths and qualities of haptic feedback. In this paper we first systematically inves- tigate the design space for haptic feedback. Second, we ex- perimentally explore differences between strengths of EMS and vibrotactile feedback. Third, based on the results, we evaluate EMS and vibrotactile feedback with regard to differ- ent virtual objects (soft, hard) and interaction with different gestures (touch, grasp, punch) in front of a large display. The results provide a basis for the design of haptic feedback that is appropriate for the given type of interaction and the material.
Towards real-time monitoring and controlling of enterprise architectures using business software control centers Tobias Brückmann, Volker Gruhn, Max Pfeiffer Proceedings of the 5th European conference on Software architecture
Gestural interaction on the steering wheel: reducing the visual demand Tanja Döring, Dagmar Kern, Paul Marshall, Max Pfeiffer, Johannes Schöning, Volker Gruhn, Albrecht Schmidt Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems

Short Papers

3D Virtual Hand Pointing with EMS and Vibration Feedback Max Pfeiffer, Wolfgang Stuerzlinger 3DUI'15

Workshop Papers

Let your body move: electrical muscle stimuli as haptics Pedro Lopes, Max Pfeiffer, Michael Rohs, Patrick Baudisch Let your body move - a tutorial on electrical muscle stimuli as haptics 2015
A Design Space for Electrical Muscle Stimulation Feedback for Free-Hand Interaction Max Pfeiffer, Stefan Schneegass, Florian Alt, Michael Rohs Workshop on Assistive Augmentation at CHI 2014
Free-hand interaction becomes a common technique for interacting with large displays. At the same time, providing haptic feedback for free-hand interaction is still a challenge, particularly feedback with different characteristics (i.e., strengths, patterns) to convey particular information. We see electrical muscle stimulation (EMS) as a well-suited technology for providing haptic feedback in this domain. The characteristics of EMS can be used to assist users in learning, manipulating, and perceiving virtual objects. One of the core challenges is to understand these characteristics and how they can be applied. As a step in this direction, this paper presents a design space that identifies different aspects of using EMS for haptic feedback. The design space is meant as a basis for future research investigating how particular characteristics can be exploited to provide specific haptic feedback.
TaxiMedia: An Interactive Context-Aware Entertainment and Advertising System Florian Alt, Alireza Sahami Shirazi, Max Pfeiffer, Paul Holleis, Albrecht Schmidt 2nd Pervasive Advertising Workshop at Informatics 2009


Follow the Force: Steering the Index Finger towards Targets using EMS Oliver Beren Kaul, Max Pfeiffer, Michael Rohs Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems
In mobile contexts guidance towards objects is usually done through the visual channel. Sometimes this channel is overloaded or not appropriate. A practicable form of haptic feedback is challenging. Electrical muscle stimulation (EMS) can generate mobile force feedback but has a number of drawbacks. For complex movements several muscles need to be actuated in concert and a feedback loop is necessary to control movements. We present an approach that only requires the actuation of six muscles with four pairs of electrodes to guide the index finger to a 2D point and let the user perform mid-air disambiguation gestures. In our user study participants found invisible, static target positions on top of a physical box with a mean 2D deviation of 1.44 cm from the intended target.
Hands-on introduction to interactive electric muscle stimulation Pedro Lopes, Max Pfeiffer, Michael Rohs, Patrick Baudisch CHI '16 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems on - CHI EA '16
In this course, participants create their own prototypes using electrical-muscle stimulation. We provide a ready-to-use device and toolkit consisting of electrodes, microcontroller, and an off-the-shelve muscle stimulator that allows for programmatically actuating the user's muscles directly from mobile devices.
3D Virtual Hand Pointing with EMS and Vibration Feedback Max Pfeiffer, Wolfgang Stuerzlinger CHI'15
A multi-touch enabled steering wheel: exploring the design space Max Pfeiffer, Dagmar Kern, Johannes Schöning, Tanja Döring, Antonio Kroeger, Albrecht Schmidt CHI '10 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems


A Wearable Force Feedback Toolkit with Electrical Muscle Stimulation Max Pfeiffer, Tim Duente, Michael Rohs CHI '16 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems on - CHI EA '16
Electrical muscle stimulation (EMS) is a promising wearable haptic output technology as it can be miniaturized and delivers a wide range of tactile and force output. However, prototyping EMS applications is currently challenging and requires detailed knowledge about EMS. We present a toolkit that simplifies prototyping with EMS and serves as a starting point for experimentation and user studies. It consists of (1) a hardware control module that uses off-the-shelf EMS devices as safe signal generators, (2) a simple communication protocol, and (3) a set of control applications for prototyping. The interactivity allows hands-on experimentation with our sample control applications.
Supporting interaction in public space with electrical muscle stimulation Max Pfeiffer, Stefan Schneegass, Florian Alt Proceedings of the 2013 ACM conference on Pervasive and ubiquitous computing adjunct publication