Aug 19, 2011

MULTITOUCH NEWS: NUITEQ's interactive display at a business park; Innovation Now's multitouch anatomy application

Multitouch Display for Business Science Park Aurorum, by NUITEQ

"NUITEQ developed a customized multi-touch software solution for Corporate Reception / Lounge Areas for Business Science Park Aurorum in LuleƄ, based on the award-winning Snowflake Suite framework. In addition to the software, NUITEQ delivered and installed a 32 touch points multitouch dreaMTouch LCD from Germany based Elektrosil."-NUITEQ

Harry van der Veen, Multitouch Blog, 8/19/11

Multitouch Anatomy by Innovation Now

"Virtual anatomy surface computer in the shape of autopsy table that show and enable the user to use hand gestures to do the anatomy process virtually." -Innovation Now

Homam Alghorani, CEO, Innovation Now Sdn Bhd

Role of Data in Interactive Multiplatform Storytelling, via iTVT (video and links)

There is a lot of things going on in the field of interactive multi-platform media!

The following videos from iTVT's StoryCentric video column are worth taking the time to abosrb. In the videos, Brian Seth Hurst, CEO of The Opportunity Management Company, interviews Gunther Sonnenfeld, SVP of Cultural Innovation and Applied Technology at Omnicom-subsidiary RAPP. The role of data in interactive multi-platform storytelling is the main focus of their discussion. 


According to the iTVT website, "StoryCentric focuses on the business, technology and art of interactive storytelling, and highlights new technologies and other industry developments that have the potential to fundamentally change the way we create and interact with stories and narratives--in television and beyond."

iTVT (Interactive TV Today)
New Edition of StoryCentric Focuses on the Role of Data in Multiplatform Storytelling
Tracy Swedlow, iTVT 8/4/11
New Edition of StoryCentric Features Seth Hurst's Interview with RAPP's Gunther Sonenfeld Tracy Swedlow, iTVT, 8/18/11

A Literacy of the Imagination (Gunther Sonnenfeld's Blog)

Aug 18, 2011

AAC Technology at Camp (augmentative and alternative communication) -via Kate Ahern

The following video clip is an awesome example of how AAC technology (augmentative and alternative communication) can be integrated into a range of activities- learning, social, leisure, and creative, when everyone makes an effort to make it work- and not give up.  Thanks to Kate Ahern for sharing this! (Cross-posted on the TechPsych blog.)
The song in the background is "Talk", by Coldplay, a perfect fit for the theme. 
"This year's AAC Summer Camp students taught us a lot. This video highlights some important things to think about when it comes to augmentative and alternative communication." -Communicare LLC
Let's Go To AAC Camp! (Includes a list of AAC camps around the U.S.)

Communicare: Speech-language pathologist specializing in Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) Communicare's resource page

Lyrics to Coldplay's "Talk"

Most of the devices highlighted in the video are very expensive and are difficult to integrate seamlessly with other technologies that are emerging in classrooms- and in homes.  I am in the process of writing a post (or two) about this topic. The ultimate goal of AAC technology is to provide people with a means to communicate more seamlessly with people beyond the "sheltered" circle of therapists, special educators, parents and teachers.

Interactive technologists, from a range of disciplines, can help make this happen.

Aug 14, 2011

Designing Culture: Investigating the Link Between Technology and Culture, an interactive transmedia project by Anne Balsamo

If you are a regular reader of this blog, you know that I use it as an on-line filing cabinet. When I learned about Anne Balsamo's recently published book, part of a larger interactive transmedia project, I decided that it warranted more than a "plug" and a quick link.

It warranted a shrine.
For this reason, I've embedded a number of videos and presentations from the project's website, along with a host of links.  Prepare to spend some time exploring her work over time!  It is food for reflection.

DESIGNING CULTURE     "Investigating the link between technology and culture, this transmedia project is realized as a print book, a dvd, and this interactive flash website ." -Designing Culture

"Anne Balsamo is a Professor of Communication in the Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism and of Interactive Media in the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of Southern California. She is a co-founder of Onomy Labs, a Silicon Valley technology design and fabrication company that builds cultural technologies. Previously, she was a member of RED (Research on Experimental Documents), a collaborative research group at Xerox PARC that created experimental reading devices and new media genres. She is the author of Technologies of the Gendered Body: Reading Cyborg Women, also published by Duke University Press." -Designing Culture

Video Overview:

Designing Culture: the Technological Imagination at Work from Anne Balsamo on Vimeo.

Designing Culture: The Technological Imagination at Work
Anne Balsamo, Duke University Press, 2011

BLOG: Designing Culture

DVD (packaged with the book)
Women of the World Talk Back: Gendering the Technological Imagination

PUBLIC INTERACTIVE WALLS: Designing Technological Literacies -Interactive Wall Books "Interactive Wall Books are large-scale dynamic mixed-media documents"
Here are a few links to online versions of the wall books for your convenience: Episodes in the History of Reading, Part 1     Episodes in the History of Reading, Part II  Episodes in the History of Reading, Part 3     Deslizate En El Tiempo: Epsodios en la Historia de la Communicacion (Developed for the Children's Museum of Mexico City)  Science for All Ages

(The above link will take you to the Onomy website's version of the exhibit. The project version can be found on the Designing Culture website.)

MAPS: Mapping the Technological Imagination Spatial Documents.
Learning to Love The Questions - an interactive semantac map, for the online journal VECTORS
Where is the Museum? Mapping the Distributed Museum -presentation at Museums and the Web 2011
Ways of the Hand: Tinkering in the Digital Age -presentation at DIY Citizenship: Critical Making and Social Media conference, 2010
Working the Paradigm Shift: The Cultural Work of the Digital Humanities - presentation at the Digital Arts Conference, 2008

Tools for the Asking

Anne Balsamo HASTAC Presentation 4_16_2010 from IML @ USC on Vimeo.

Gendering the Technological How a Robot Got its Groove

Cool Fusion: Designing Culture - Working the Paradigm Shift

Reviews of Designing Culture by Lawrence Grossberg, Cathy N. Davidson, and John Seely Brown ( site for the book)
Balsamo's New Book Details Technological Imagination at Work
Annenberg News, 8/10/11
HASTAC: Humanities, Arts, Science, and Technology Advance Collaboratory

Anne Balsamo worked on the following project:
Tangible Interface for Viewing the Aids Quilt

"This project will develop an application that enables collaborative browsing of a database of images of panels of The AIDS Memorial Quilt that have been “virtually stitched together.”  The application will be used with Onomy Lab’s Tilty Table, a tangible interactive device that serves as a display surface for large-scaled images." -(info from Anne Balsamo's blog)

Aug 13, 2011

If only I had time to play with this: Microsoft Kinect on Tegra 2 (Android 3.0), link to Raymond's Blog with code and tips

Quick Link: TechPsych post about transition/job skills resources for young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders

Quick Link:
TechPsych post about transition/job skills resources for young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders:

Interactive Digital Media on a Tablet: 1994 video from the Information Design Lab (lots of related "tablet" links)

Since I'm a fairly new owner of an iPad2, my first tablet, I've been having a blast using it with students at work as well as watching my nearly 9 month old grandson play around with it.  Although I am happy that I have this "innovative" technology at my fingertips,  I know that the concept of tablet computing has been a round for a very long time.

If you are curious to learn more about the history of ideas behind the tablet/iPad/eReader concept, take a look at the video below.  It features the work of Roger Fidler and his team at the Information Design Lab, reviewing their work between 1992-94.   Also explore the links in the "Related" section - I've included links to articles, a dissertation, and a book that mightof interest to those who are researching this topic.   (A must-read is Alan C. Kay's "A Personal Computer for Children of All Ages", written in 1972.)

The Tablet Newspaper: A Vision for the Future
Information Design Lab, 1994,  Knight-Ridder, Inc.

History of the Tablet
Chandra Steele, PC Magazine, 8/7/11
A Short History of the Tablet Computer
Thom Holwerda, OS News, 1/15/10
A Personal Computer for Children of All Ages (pdf)
Alan C. Kay, Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, August, 1972
(Alan C. Kay came up with the concept of the DynaBook, basically an early version of the tablet PC/ iPad/eReader. I especially like the picture of students using Kay's version of tablets, located on page 2.  Be sure to take a look at the reference section.)
Tracing the Dynabook: A Study of Technocultural Transformation (pdf)
John W. Maxwell, PhD. Dissertation, Centre for Cross-Faculty Inquiry, University of British Columbia, November, 2006
Roger Fidler and his Early Vision of the Newspaper Tablet
Juan Antonio Giner, What's Next: Innovations in Newspapers, 1/4/10
The Man Who Imagined Tablets and E-Readers
Curtis Brainard, Columbia Journalism Review, 6/17/10
Roger Fidler, Journalism Futures Lab
Roger Fidler
The Tablet Newspaper: A Vision For the Future
Teresa Martin, Knight-Ridder Information Design Lab, CHI '95 Proceedings
Abstract: "The Table Newspaper: A Vision for the Future overviews tomorrow's portable information appliances and the ways in which we may interact with information. It explores the role a newspaper may have in the digital era and the form a newspaper may take as an electronic product."
The Media Business;  Knight-Ridder Shuts Down Research Lab
New York Times, 8/3/95
Below is a quote from the NYT article, written in 1995:

"Knight-Ridder Inc. has closed a research lab it established to explore electronic publishing alternatives like the flat-panel newspaper.
The Information Design Laboratory, which opened here three years ago, was developing a notebook-sized computer for receiving and displaying electronic newspapers. The electronic tablet weighed less than two pounds and displayed a screen image that looked like the front page of a newspaper. The lab never designed a product that was marketed by Knight-Ridder.
"I.D.L. made a valuable contribution to the company's long-range vision of electronic publishing and helped to further the flat-panel newspaper concept," P. Anthony Ridder, Knight-Ridder's chairman and chief executive, said Monday. Knight-Ridder plans to concentrate its electronic publishing efforts on existing technologies like the Internet and on-line services, Polk Laffoon, vice president of corporate relations, said."

Aug 7, 2011

Usability of Touchable-Moveable Multimedia Content. Part I (carousels and more)

I've been revisiting the topic of interaction design/usability for "touchable/moveable" multimedia content for the past couple of weeks.    I recently got an iPad2, so I'm in the "app" exploration phase -  a new world, since I never had an iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad "1".  

I plan to share  experiences, thoughts, opinions, and suggestions related to this topic during the upcoming months.   I welcome input from IMT readers!

Getting back to my iPad2....In addition to using the device to run apps, like most people, I also use it to visit websites.  Many sites now appear to be optimized for mobile devices, which is great for my Android-based smartphone, but for my iPad, not so much.   I thought by now we'd have more touchy-feely content to play with.

I've noticed that  basic features that work OK with touch interaction, such as the carousel, 
seem to miss the target, as discussed in the following article:

5 Big Usability Designers Make on Carousels
Anthony, UX Movement, 8/2/11

Although the above article was written from a "click" rather than "touch" perspective, many of the comments Anthony brings up ring true for websites and apps that are accessed through tablets and other touch enable screens.

I'm disappointed.  Here are a few of my grumbles:

  • Many designers/developers have been slow to look at the increasing number of people who are accessing websites and applications via touch-enabled screens - of any size.   
  • Many designers/developers have been slow to catch on that a website or app might be viewed/used by more than one person at a time.  Websites for house-hunting, home furnishings, vacation/travel, and education are a few examples that come to mind.
  • Too many "multimedia" apps/websites are flat. Many still have a power-pointy feel.
  • Websites optimized for mobile devices often leave important features out.
  • Designers/developers sometimes don't seem to think about the various scenarios in which their applications/websites might be used - while balancing a baby on one hip, preparing a meal,  working out,  walking the dog, trotting around the mall with a friends/kids/spouse,  eating, waiting at a stop light, etc.

Too many iPad apps are flat and power-pointy. Too many apps don't take full advantage multi-touch features.  Very few apps allow for efficient interaction between two people on the screen.  

Carousel Design Patterns   I will add more related links in the future - not limited to carousels : )
Carousel Interaction #21 (Mike Highfield's Rapid eLearning Blog
Carousel (Interaction Patterns Wiki)
Carousel (Welie)
Mobile Implementation of a Web 3D Carousel with Touch Input
Bjorkskog, C., Jacucci, G., Lorentin, B., Gamberinit, L.

Photo Credit:  Ohad

Aug 5, 2011

Link: BlogHer '11 Conference - Technology & Parenting, Moms as Family CTOs, Social Networking for Good, and More

GoPro Wearable (extreme) Sports Camera: I Want One! (video)

I'd love to have a GoPro wearable HD camera for creating immersive multimedia content. The only problem is that I'd have to take up extreme sports as a hobby if I wanted to do my own videography. 

Take a look at the promo video from the GoPro website - best viewed in full-screen:

I see great possibilities for interactive, "touchable" multimedia content using video captured in this manner!

If you ever wondered what NYC looks like from the POV of a fast and furious skateboard, take a look at this video, "Skate Through NYC With A GoPro":

Thanks to Nat Torkington for sharing the video and link in Google+!

Blog Post: Skate Through NYC with a GoPro
Mareadyphotography Blog

NodeBeat HD 1.5 Upgrade, an iOS Music Sequencer: Fun to Play on my iPad!

NodeBeat HD 1.5 - iOS Music Sequencer from AffinityBlue on Vimeo.

Below is information about NodeBeat 1.5 from the Vimeo website:

"This is a brief video showcasing some of the new features in NodeBeat HD 1.5. The same features will be coming to the iPhone/iPod Touch version of NodeBeat in the coming weeks."

"New Features Include:

- Entirely new user interface design
- Drag and drop new nodes
- Drum Generator Node
- Sine, Triangle, Sawtooth, and Square waveform selection
- Tempo and BPM controls
- Compress recording for faster e-mailing of recordings
- Create ringtones from recordings
- Sleep Timer. Now you can fall asleep to NodeBeat
- Shake to Clear Screen
- 5 Finger multitouch reset all"
"NodeBeat is an experimental node-based audio sequencer and generative music application for the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad."

(Just 99 cents!)

NodeBeat website

NodeBeat iTunes Preview

Play and Experiment with Music on your iPad/Pod/Phone with NodeBeat iOS Music Sequencer by Affinity Blue by Seth Sandler and Justin Windle  (previous post)

NodeBeat: Create and View Musical Soundscapes
iPad Creative, 5/31/11

Seth Sandler     Justin Windle

Baby playing NodeBeat 1.0 -using fingers and toes:

Aug 2, 2011

Taking a look at CreativeJS: "The very best of creative JavaScript and HTML5" -

I came across the CreativeJS website while searching for HTML5/JavaScript resources suitable for creative multimedia projects.  The team at CreativeJS includes Seb Lee-Delisle, Val Head, Paul Neave, Rob Hawkes, Hakim El Hattab, and Lisa Larson-Kelley.

What a talented team!

Recent blog post from CreativeJS:  Spherical Harmonics Mesh Builder
Seb Lee-Delisle
Neave Interactive
Rob Hawke's book:  Foundation HTML5 Canvas
Hakim El Hattab's Experiments
Lisa Larson-Kelley's Website:  Learn from Lisa (Web video publishing)

Interactive Digital Fireworks

Digital Fireworks in Brighton from Seb Lee-Delisle on Vimeo.