The Bubble Lens Bubble Lens

Martez E. Mott, University of Washington [contact]
Jacob O. Wobbrock, University of Washington


Current Version 1.0.0

Windows executable:
Source code:
Pseudocode: Pseudocode (PDF)

The Bubble Lens requires the Microsoft .NET 2.0 Framework or later. Download it here.
This software is distributed under the New BSD License agreement.


The Bubble Lens is a pointing facilitation technique that builds upon the Bubble Cursor by remedying the Bubble Cursor's poor performance around small, dense targets. Specifically, the Bubble Lens detects when the user is approaching a small, densely packed target and, as the user attempts to acquire this target, the cursor automatically magnifies into a circular lens, speeding the user's final stage of target acquisition. The automatic magnification is based on a technique called kinematic triggering that continually monitors a movement's velocity profile for the presence of certain events or conditions. In the case of the Bubble Lens, kinematic triggering fires the lens on the downslope of the first corrective movement in the velocity profile. In laboratory studies of random target-field pointing, the Bubble Lens was 10.2% faster and 37.9% more accurate than the Bubble Cursor.


The Bubble Lens on YouTube.


Mott, M.E. and Wobbrock, J.O. (2014). Beating the bubble: Using kinematic triggering in the Bubble Lens for acquiring small, dense targets. Proceedings of the ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI '14). Toronto, Ontario (April 26-May 1, 2014). New York: ACM Press, pp. 733-742.


This work was supported in part by the National Science Foundation under grant IIS-0952786. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this work are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of any supporter listed above.

Copyright © 2014 Jacob O. Wobbrock. All rights reserved.
Last updated December 23, 2016.