Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Intel Labs' demo of the Oasis Project for your kitchen counter: Gesture and Object Recognition in your kitchen!

Intel's Oasis system uses object recognition that triggers various applications that generate shopping lists and recipes. The system can handle more than one item of food.  It includes videos of how to prepare meals, a great feature for people just starting out, or those who are learning to prepare healthier meals.

In my opinion, this sort of application would be useful to people with disabilities that affect memory.


Cisco's Cius, An Ultra-Portable, Android-based Mobile Collaboration Business Tablet: Supports Real-time, HD Videoconferencing, and the "Cloud"

Credit: Wired Gadget Lab, CISCO

Here is a promotional video from Cisco that provides a few scenarios that highlight how the Cius can be used in a cloud-computing business environment. The Cius provides mobile telepresence capabilities. It runs on the open-architecture of the Android operating system.

Here is a video, recently uploaded by someone attending the from the "reveal":
Cisco Cius Demo at Cisco Live

From the CISCO Cius website:

  • 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, 3G/4G data and Bluetooth 3.0 help employees stay connected on and off-campus
  • HD video (720p) with Cisco TelePresence solution interoperability for lifelike video communication with the simplicity of a phone call
  • Virtual desktop client enables highly secure access to cloud-based business applications
  • Android operating system, with access Android marketplace applications
  • Collaboration applications including Cisco QuadCisco Show and ShareWebEx, Presence, and IM
Tablet Highlights:
  • 7” diagonal, high-resolution color screen with contact-based touch targets delivers an elegant, intuitive experience
  • HD Soundstation supports Bluetooth and USB peripherals, 10/100/1000 wired connectivity and a handset option
  • Detachable and serviceable 8-hour battery for a full day of work
  • Highly secure remote connections with Cisco AnyConnect Security VPN Client
  • HD audio with wideband support (tablet, HD Soundstation)
For details on availability, contact your Cisco or Channel Partner account representative.


Pictures are from Jason Hiner's blog at Tech Republic:

Apparently the Cius has a docking station.

A nice, Facebook-like interface is OK with me.

I wonder if it comes with a make-up kit so everyone looks presentable in HD TV.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

The Economics of Cloud Computing: Live Webcast on ZDNet Highlights Microsoft's Approach

This might be a useful webcast for people interested in keeping up the changes in "cloud computing".   If you aren't very familiar with the term, cloud computing refers to

Live Webcast: The Economics of the Cloud
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
12:00 PM ET / 9:00 AM PT / 4:00 PM GMT

"The shift toward cloud services is reaching across application development, deployment and delivery, and impacts virtually every aspect of how people and businesses use technology."

Cloud Computing Topic 
 Picture Credit: ZDNET
(Chirag is a technology, design, and innovation strategist with the office of the CEO at SAP, and an adjunct at Santa Clara University and San Jose State University.)
Neal Leavitt's article:  Is Cloud Computing Really Really for Prime Time?

Google Tech Talk: Faculty Summit 2009 - good overview

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Mobile User Experience Graphic, via Sachendra

I came across the following graphic from a post by Sachendra on the Technology, Mobility, Usability and other Musings blog:

What I really like is how the picture depicts the "user" out and about, walking a dog. It gave me a smile, since I now carry my Android Incredible with me when I take out my own dog. My dog loves to stop and sniff around, one of her life's pleasures, and when she does, I found that it is a good time for me to interact with my connection to the world.

Although the picture in depicts a man, it could be a template for use during the user-centered design process. I see a lot of parents pushing strollers AND walking dogs as they are tethered to an iPhone or another sort of SmartPhone. In some cases, there are two dogs, and infant, and a toddler!

 The author of the blog post includes a series of video clips that show the different ways HTC, Motorola, and Sony Ericson have utilized the Android platform by tweaking the UI to enhanced the perceived user experience.

Friday, June 25, 2010

10 Interactive User Interfaces for the Future, Via Gizmo Watch; CNN's Eatocracy Site for Foodies - Food with Stories

I changed the name of this blog to reflect my focus on interactivity.  The World Is My Interface is now The World Is My Interactive Interface. 

In keeping with the change-of-blog-title, I thought I'd share a quick link to a recent Gizmowatch post, Ten Interactive User Interfaces for the Future.  Bharat, the authro, reviews a variety of interfaces, input methods, and interaction techniques, such as Skinput, a water-based touch screen, a muscle-computer interface, air gestures, brain-computer systems, and even a mud-tub interface

I was fortunate to see some of these interaction techniques and interfaces when I attended CHI 2010 this past April, and plan to share some of my photos and video clips on this blog soon.

Totally Unrelated

Online connection for foodies
Eatocracy is a new website within the CNN pages that provides news- and more- about all things related to food. The categories on the site include "main", "news", "bite", "sip", "make", "think", and "buzz".  The best part, in my opinion, is the heirloom recipe collection index, where people can upload and share family recipies and the stories behind them.

Here is the description of Eatocracy from the website:

Eatocracy  "is your online home for smart, passionate conversation and information about food news, politics, culture. We'll highlight regional and family recipes, dive into restaurants and food shopping, chat with celebrity and local chefs, and show you what's for dinner around the world tonight. Grab a place at the table and read with your mouth full."


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

WSJ's Interactive Graphics: China's Housing Markets, via Innovative Interactivity

Dissecting China's Housing Market - Multimedia - WSJ.Com
"How does China's housing market work?  Who are the main players? And why have housing prices gone up so much?  Watch an animation explaining all this and more."

The Wall Street Journal has dedicated a great interactive webspace that focuses on the country's housing market.  Interactive content includes a timeline that shows the correlation between government policies and housing prices, videos that provide an overview of the situation and how the dream of home ownership is shared among many who live in China. The info-graphics are well-done.

For further information and analysis about the WSJ piece, see Tracy Boyer's recent post on the Innovative Interactivity blog: 
Wall Street Journal utilizes motion graphics to illustrate China's housing market.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The First Self-replicating Cell with a Computer for a Parent - Synthetic Life.

"Craig Venter and team make a historic announcement: they've created the first fully functioning, reproducing cell controlled by synthetic DNA. He explains how they did it and why the achievement marks the beginning of a new era for science."   It took about 15 years for the team to complete the work on this project, which was funded by Synthetic Genomics, Inc.

Craig Venter is known for his role in the private effort to sequence the human genome.

Press Release 5/20/10:  First Self-Replicating Synthetic Bacterial Cell
First Self-replicating Synthetic Bacterial Cell (Overview)
J. Craig Venter Institute
Synthetic Genomics|Options for Governance

Colonies of the transformed Mycoplasma mycoides bacterium. Image Credit:  J. Craig Venter Institute

More TED Talks: Chip Conley's discussion about measuring what makes life worthwhile

"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." Albert Einstein

The above quote was used during Chip Conley's 2010 TED Talk about measuring what makes life worthwhile.

Chip Conley is a hotelier who focuses on creating habitats of happiness. In this talk, Conley discusses how he adopted the psychologist Mazlow's hierachy of needs and applied it to create a business model that focuses on intangible higher needs of his companies employees, customers, and investors. He also shares how he gained insight about metrics and happiness during a trip to Bhutan to study the Gross National Happiness Index (GNHI), which is something he recommends that business leaders and governments to focus on.  He points out how the metrics behind the GDP may not be sufficient for monitoring or measuring the state of today's complex world.

PEAK:  How Great Companies Get Their Mojo from Mazlow
(Chip Conley)

Direct link to Chip Conley's TED Talks video, with an interesting discussion.

Note: During the weeks of my summer break, I thought I'd catch up on some of the TED Talks that I missed, and I'll share a few of my favorites on this blog.

Fractals in our world: "I'm a mathemetician and I'd like to stand on your roof": Ron Eglash on African Fractals

Interesting TED Talk:
Self-replication and recursive scaling patterns in African village architecture, discussed from the point-of-view of mathematician Ron Eglash:

Some of this architecture relies on complex algorithms. You can find out why some farmers in Africa make fractal fences.  Self-organization is in our brains and networks, and also related to adverse medical conditions as well.  The African Fractals website contains the pictures used in the TED presentation.

Here is Ron Eglash's bio, from the TED website:
"Ethno-mathematician" Ron Eglash is the author of African Fractals, a book that examines the fractal patterns underpinning architecture, art and design in many parts of Africa. By looking at aerial-view photos -- and then following up with detailed research on the ground -- Eglash discovered that many African villages are purposely laid out to form perfect fractals, with self-similar shapes repeated in the rooms of the house, and the house itself, and the clusters of houses in the village, in mathematically predictable patterns.

As he puts it: "When Europeans first came to Africa, they considered the architecture very disorganized and thus primitive. It never occurred to them that the Africans might have been using a form of mathematics that they hadn't even discovered yet."

His other areas of study are equally fascinating, including research into African and Native American cybernetics, teaching kids math through culturally specific design tools (such as the Virtual Breakdancer applet, which explores rotation and sine functions), and race and ethnicity issues in science and technology. Eglash teaches in the Department of Science and Technology Studies at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York, and he recently co-edited the book Appropriating Technology, about how we reinvent consumer tech for our own uses.


Learning and creating designs with African Fractals

Ron Eglash's Website


Sunday, June 13, 2010

Smule's Virtual Glee App for iPad or iPhone: Sing with yourself in perfect harmony- or with other Gleeks around the world!

This was originally posted on the Interactive Multimedia Technology blog.
Sing with yourself and Gleeks around the world in perfect harmony: 

Demo of the Glee iPhone + iPad App by Smule - "I'll Stand By You"
"Glee, for iPhone + iPad, by Smule. This impromptu, one-take performance by Smule engineer Nick late one night at HQ demonstrates how the app transforms his voice into a group of singers harmonizing with him."

This is exactly why I NEED an iPad!

Tutorial Part 1
"How To"

Tutorial Part II:
The Glee GlobeShows how you can share your Glee songs and sing with others around the globe!

Cool iPad Digital Piano App

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Media Facades and Projected Social Graffiti at Drexel University (Includes a 7-story tweet)

"Behold the seven-story tweet", a post by Leslie Katz on CNET News, highlights the Social Graffiti project by the digital media students at Drexel University, in Philidelphia. You can digitally tag your tweets with @dgmGraffitti, and it will be projected onto the surface of Nesbitt Hall. 

There is a built-in filtering system, so profanity and potentially offensive messages will not show up, unlike real graffiti.

The slideshow below is from the Social Graffiti Flickr site:

Social Graffiti Project (Directions and more photos can be found on this site.)

TEAM:  Matt Morton, Team Leader, Animator; Chad Porche, Flash Animator; Cara Schroeder: Modeler, Animator; Kurt Gawinowicz: Web Designer, Animator; Kerry Russo: Programmer

Interfacing the World with 4G and a SmartPhone

Here are a few quick links about 4G and SmartPhones:

4G Summit Website (June 3-4 2010)
Everything you need to know about 4G Wireless
Priya Ganapati, CNN Tech  6/4/10 via Wired
Previous post:  LTE vs WiMax:  Trying my best to understand emerging technologies

LTE vs WiMax: A Little 4G Sibling Rivalry
Stacey Higginbotham, GigaOM, (3/5/08)
From Mike Demler:
If you have $$$:

Friday, June 4, 2010

Recent Video-clip of Jupiter, Hit by an Impactor - via Ars Technica

I thought I'd share info and links about a post on the Ars Technica blog about the latest news from...Jupiter.

Jupiter hit by another impactor Thursday; video inside
Kunio M. Sayanagi,  Ars Technica 6/3/10

"Wesley and Go are both dedicated amateur astronomers who observe Jupiter every night that the planet is visible from their back yards, and they both have track records of major discoveries. Wesley discovered theJupiter impact last summer; Go first discovered the color change in Oval BA, a major vortex of Jupiter that turned red in 2006 and is now known as the Red Spot Jr." -Kunio M. Sayanagi


Impact on Jupiter, June 3, 2010 from Ars Technica on Vimeo.

"An object impacted Jupiter on June 3, 2010 and it was caught on video by amateur astronomer Christopher Go of the Philippines."

My dog woke me up at 4:00 AM to visit the yard, so I'm posting this while I'm waiting.

I was initially planning on reading the following post of an interview of Joseph Tobolski, a partner at Accenture Technology Labs who is knowledgeable about cloud computing.  The article was written by Jon Stokes, of Ars Technica:

Cloud tradeoffs: freedom of choice vs. freedom from choice

I especially liked this quote:

"I'm kind of reminded of that Dilbert cartoon where he's complaining about the size of his mailbox. And he hands someone a quarter and says, "There, double the size of my mailbox." That's the challenge that a lot of these services present—the [cloud] services arguably are different, and a lot of them are the same, but the perception is that they're all easy to get and very cheap, and why the heck does it take our internal IT function so much longer and so much more money to achieve the same perceived results?" - Joseph Tobolski

More on this topic later.  I need to let my dog back in so I can get back to the comfort of resting my head on my pillow until sunrise!