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I've developed a nice visualization that is multi-touch enabled and runs on a big multi-touch display. Now we have made some experiments and placed random users in front of the application. We observed something strange. A lot of people were looking for some kind of interface such as mouse or keyboard to interact with the application.

Is there any way that I can indicate directly in my application that it is touch-enabled? It could really destroy the look & feel of the original application, but it should tell random users that approach my visualization that they should use their fingers to interact with it.

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I've occasionally seen cheesy signs that say "touch me!" I think a local grocery has one of them, I'll see if I can get a picture...making sure your first screen clearly has visual buttons is an important part of it too, see Redbox's interface – Ben Brocka Apr 3 '12 at 15:56
Can you give any more detail about your app? Hard to suggest something specific with no information. – yitznewton Apr 3 '12 at 18:20

"Touch to start" explicit message could be a starting point.

Consider also the use of a more visual language by adding icon similar to :

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If the display has a camera, you could detect that a potential user is nearby and use an animation to demonstrate that the screen is a touch screen and stop animation as soon as it has been touched.

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