Projects

12pixels


A technology to create pixel art with mobile phone buttons

 

12Pixels is a simple technology that lets people create pixel art using the 12 buttons of a mobile phone.

Mobile phones have 12 keys—0-9, *and #. 12Pixels is designed to make these keys correspond to 12 groups of pixels on the screen.

 


Pixel art (64 x 27 pixels) can be created in three layers

 

In 12Pixels, there are three layers in the display. In each layer, the pixels are divided into 12 groups, which correspond to the 12 buttons on the phone, allowing users to draw pictures with high definition. In the largest layer, the whole mobile-phone screen is divided into 12 groups of pixels. By pressing corresponding buttons, the colors of the pixels will change from white to black. The resulting image is still low in definition. It can be moved to the more detailed layers of pixels via the Joystick key, to gain greater resolution for more clear and beautiful art. These art works can be shared on a network. Also, works by other users can be downloaded and modified, broadening communication through pixel art. In a year-long demonstration test that started in March 2009, more than 20,000 pieces of pixel art were submitted and exchanged on the network. The 12Pixels technology was installed in Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications’s Global CedarTM mobile phone in 2011. The model has gained in popularity in the Americas, Middle East, Africa, India and China as an eco-friendly GreenHeartTM device.

 

Related Publications

- Poupyrev, I., Willis, K. TwelvePixels: Drawing & Creativity on a Mobile Phone. Proceedings of CHI'08. 2008: ACM: pp. 2361-2366.

 

 

- Willis, K., Poupyrev, I. 12Pixels: Exploring Social Drawing on Mobile Phones. Proceedings of Pervasive 2010, LNCS 6030, 2010: Springer-Verlag: pp. 391-408.