But something happened the first time I tried out Microsoft’s high definition motion control system, Project Natal. Instead of waving a remote around wildly to smack a tennis ball or knock an in-game foe down with a digital sword, I found myself feeling disconnected from Microsoft’s controller-free experience. I realized, as I played around with the Project Natal prototype, due to hit stores this year, that I was spending more time examining the game’s reaction to my motions than I was having fun.
In its first implementation, the Flyfire project sets out to explore the capabilities of this display system by using a large number of self-organizing micro helicopters. Each helicopter contains small LEDs and acts as a smart pixel. Through precisely controlled movements, the helicopters perform elaborate and synchronized motions and form an elastic display surface for any desired scenario.
Stamen Designs Live Twitter Visualizations of the Vancouver Olympics. Nicely done, you can find the live version here.
If you time-traveled back to 1995 and asked the leading futurists of that time where our machines were soon to take us, you might well have heard just as much rhapsodizing about document-centric interfaces as that about hypertext and the World Wide Web. [...]
The weird thing about the iPad is that it has landed us 180 degrees from where we thought we were heading. The iPad interface – like the iPhone's – tries to do everything in its power to do away with documents and files.
Will Normal Folks Ever Use Twitter? A thoughtful analysis of the first impression that new users experience when signing up for Twitter.
It’s not asking if you want to join or activate Buzz. It’s asking if you want to learn more about it.
Even if you click “No” (or, in California-speak, “Nah, go to my inbox”), you are still enrolled in Buzz. The “Buzz” box still appears in your sidebar. The nice folks at Google just assume you want to be part of their new world where “[i]f you have something that you don’t want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn’t be doing it in the first place.“
As for me, I couldn’t help but make a few observations – I’ll try to take a different angle, at least initially, approaching it from urbanism as much as product/service design, particularly not having seen the thing in the flesh yet.
Glitch is a massively-multiplayer game, playable in the browser and built in the spirit of the web. It is currently in development and will launch late in 2010. Private alpha is beginning shortly and a public beta period will begin this summer.
The first time I entered ChatRoulette-a new website that brings you face-to-face, via webcam, with an endless stream of random strangers all over the world-I was primed for a full-on Walt Whitman experience: an ecstatic surrender to the miraculous variety and abundance of humankind. The site was only a few months old, but its population was beginning to explode in a way that suggested serious viral potential: 300 users in December had grown to 10,000 by the beginning of February. Although big media outlets had yet to cover it, smallish blogs were full of huzzahs.