Archive for February, 2009

1-2-10: Beyond desktop

Thursday, February 12th, 2009

(Oh! Naiveté! A laypersons notes on revolutionizing UIX)
1. Tagging / metadata. – Non-hierarchal storage system. Mandatory (semi-automatic) tagging system. Tags used to enable following spatial recall / gestalt grouping / temporal arrangement. (Spotlight / Google Desktop Search / OpenMeta)

2. Portal – Extension of metaphor of cloud computing. device becomes access to cloud-based data. thin-client via internet. No saving / opening / closing files. All changes are automatically, atomically applied to the storage system(s). Can revert to any point using a versioning system (time-based?). (Time Machine – subversion)

3. Spatial memory – Ability to recall location relative to current position. Use extremely granular geotagging. Continuously update shortcuts to media and applications used frequently / recently in the current location. How to affect this without actually shifting objects around on the user’s computer? (Google – Lattitude service)

4. Temporal Recall – Remember when something was last used, rather than it’s location or name. Objects arranged in groupings of time periods.

5. Gestalt grouping – Assembling similar objects together. Objects may have several, overlapping group memberships. Incorporating the with above concepts.

All of these serve to augment the user’s capacity for recall and act as an extension of their memory. Inverting the data push into pull would extend senses and awareness of environment beyond natural abilities.


Spatial Media: Traffic Flow

Thursday, February 12th, 2009

puckTangible interface for exploring local network traffic.

The installation will be been designed to visualize the flow of information within a local area network. The goal is to make visible the invisible layer of information that comprises our information infrastructure which generally flows beneath a general level of awareness. (more…)

Thinking Physically: Brauswitch

Wednesday, February 11th, 2009

[Follow-up with a short video demonstration of it available here.]


The Brauswtich is a digital switch to be worn on the forehead, just above the eyebrows. Raising one or both eyebrows will close the switch. There is a small gap between the upper and lower portions of the headband. It is made with a heavy burlap; the upper portion is stiffer than the lower portion which generally moves less as the eyebrows are raised and enables the switching motion.

It was designed without a specific output in mind; the task was to work within the confines of the assigned body part – in this case the head and torso. In class we attached each of our switches to an Arduino +WaveSheild and used them to trigger sound effects. (more…)

Thinking Physically: Affordance Treasure Hunt

Monday, February 9th, 2009

we embarked upon an affordance treasure hunt as an exercise for our thinking physically class. given a set of criteria we had to identify objects which satisfied the criteria for the indicated user set. i’m still anchoring my understanding of affordances, assisted by reading j.j. gibson’s introduction to the topic and donald norman’s discussion about “perceived affordances” in his book “the design of everyday things”. affordances are intersections between the physical properties of an object and the capabilities of the animal attempting to interact with it. (more…)

1-2-10: Click Here

Thursday, February 5th, 2009

WebDesigning buttons for mobile devices. Each button has to evoke a word from a provided list.

happy, angry, scared, fast, nervous, cute, dangerous, search, glamourous, full, skinny, noisy, painful, tiny, quiet, hot, cold, sexy, free, autumn, childish, breaking news (more…)

Spatial Media: Fivesies

Thursday, February 5th, 2009

couch_fives_startThe couch is often prime space in a living room during social gatherings and securing a spot on it can be a priority. Eventually, the couch sitter will have to get up, to use the restroom, to get a drink or snacks, to take a phone call, etc.. “Calling fives” or “fivesies” declares your intention to leave only momentarily and requests (demands!) that your seat be reserved for five minutes. There are times when someone walks into the room in your absence and is unaware that “fives” had been called on the vacant couch seat or others when the time remaining is in question. This display will let everyone know the couch “fivesies” status. (more…)

Thinking Physically: {h}ears

Wednesday, February 4th, 2009

big-ears-frontmegaphones for ears. inspired by prince, tigre and penguin.

i’ve always been a cat person. when i lived with my first cat i’d watch his ears swivel as he would listen to the sounds around us. sometimes i’d make quiet noises when he was looking away to see if he’d turn his ears toward me.

it is easy, of course, to accomplish a shadow of his ability by cupping my hands behind my ears…but i wanted to try something much more foolish. (more…)