3D Associative Symbol Array

Paper presents an early concept of user interface component that is designed to help computer users to intuitively organise their digital storage, so that they can easily locate their previously saved documents. Instead of using traditional hierarchical folder tree, user is associating his documents with a pair of symbols, organized into three dimensional working space. Positions of user’s hands are used to determine pair of symbols, being detected either using depth sensor or RGB camera.

JETENSKY, Pavel and KARAMAZOV, Simeon, 2014. 3D associative symbol array as component of user interface. In: Proceedings ELMAR-2014. September 2014. p. 1–4. DOI 10.1109/ELMAR.2014.6923328. [Accessed 12 February 2024].

In 1968, Doug Engelbart made his famous demonstration, later retrospectively called ”The Mother of All Demos” [1].


Sherman, set the Wayback for December 8, 1968, on stage at the Fall Joint Computer Conference in San Francisco where Douglas Engelbart presented a 90 minute talk, "A Research Center for Augmenting Human Intellect."


The live demonstration featured an introduction of almost all the fundamental elements of modern personal computing: from multiple windows, through hypertext to support for collaborative work. One of the novel features presented was hierarchical tree that user can create and manage to organize pieces of information.

Associative Array is a theoretical concept of user interface component that enables users to utilize their associative brain skills to gain fast access to previously stored data or execute previously associated computer commands. […] User using proposed associative array component behaves in a similar way as algorithm directly obtaining data through key in a Hash Map, avoiding tree traversal.