Over decades we’ve used to adapt our habits, behavior and mindset to technology. We’ve improved our productivity by using tools and devices designed especially for the tasks we have to deal with regularly. But we’ve also constrained our abilities to the features of the very tools and devices we’ve become dependant on.
We’ve got used to a number of things. To traditional mouse-keyboard user interaction, to 2D windows-based user interface and to a rather unspectacular user’s workflow which enables one user interact with only one application at a time. For instance, while you’re browsing in your web browser you can’t scale your text and resize your window simultaneously — unless you are a keyboard-shortcut-master.
Good news: it can be different. Below we present some of the outstanding recent developments in the field of user experience design. Most techniques may seem very futuristic, but they are reality. And in fact, they are extremely impressive. Keep in mind: they can become ubiquitous over the next years.
Absolutely incredible. Cheoptics360 is a Vizoo’s product which can change our understanding of 3D for always. This is a documentation of the 5×5 meter Cheoptics360 in the Vizoo’s showroom. No special effects or compositing has been used editing this movie. This is the real thing. Official web-site.
reactable is a collaborative electronic music instrument with a tabletop tangible multi-touch interface. Several simultaneous performers share complete control over the instrument by moving and rotating physical objects on a luminous round table surface.
By moving and relating these objects, representing components of a classic modular synthesizer, users can create complex and dynamic sonic topologies, with generators, filters and modulators, in a kind of tangible modular synthesizer or graspable flow-controlled programming language. Demos.
Multi-Touch-based devices accept input from multiple fingers and multiple users simultaneously, allowing for complex gestures, including grabbing, stretching, swiveling and sliding virtual objects across the table. While touch sensing is commonplace for single points of contact, multi-touch sensing enables a user to interact with a system with more than one finger at a time, as in chording and bi-manual operations. Demos 1, Demos 2.
Such sensing devices are inherently also able to accommodate multiple users simultaneously, which is especially useful for interactive walls and tabletops. Multi-Touch is already widely used. Apple’s iPhone has Multi-Touch scrolling and picture manipulation.
Multi-Touch is also the core of Microsoft Surface, an interactive tabletop which allows a user, or multiple users, to manipulate digital content by the use of natural motions, hand gestures, or physical objects by putting them on the surface. Microsoft Surface Reviewed.
Using photos of oft-snapped subjects (like Notre Dame) scraped from around the Web, Photosynth creates breathtaking multidimensional spaces with zoom and navigation features that outstrip all expectation. Its architect, Blaise Aguera y Arcas, shows it off in this standing-ovation demo.
The technology was recently acquired by Microsoft and is now a part of Microsoft Live Labs. Microsoft Photosynth web-site. Photosynth Technology is a new way to view photos on a computer. The software takes a large collection of photos of a place or an object, analyzes them for similarities, and then displays the photos in a reconstructed three-dimensional space, showing you how each one relates to the next.
Bumptop is a fresh user interface that takes the usual desktop metaphor to a glorious, 3D extreme. In this physics-driven universe, important files finally get the weight they deserve via an oddly satisfying resizing feature, and the drudgery of file organization becomes a freewheeling playground full of crumpled documents and clipping-covered “walls.” TED-presentation of Bumptop.