Kirlian photography techniques
used to capture electrical discharges and made famous in parapsychology research
are revisited in the Digital Ethereal
project to manifest the ghosts
of wireless networks.
Following on the heels of Phonebloks
, a Google/Motorola formed a design group called Project Ara
. The Verge
recently interviewed Paul Eremenko
, the project lead, about progress made towards modularization of mobile phone components, overcoming engineering issues, and the group assigning itself an ambitious timetable to succeed in delivering a sellable product within two years, or disbanding.
The Nordic Society for Invention & Discovery
has brought never-before-seen and totally exclusive technologies into the world, such as the Aaltopuck
(an ice hockey puck modeled after Alvar Aalto's Savoy Vase
), the Flower Shell
(a shotgun shell that shoots seeds into the ground
), the Wall of Sound
(an 8000-watt iPod dock
) and No More Woof
(a device that wraps around your dog's head and translates his or her brain waves to computerized speech
How The Economic Machine Works by Ray Dalio
 actually makes a case against austerity
 and for redistribution, but also for money printing
(and, arguably, for bailouts), while stressing the need to keep making productivity-improving public
investments. However, it could be equally entitled: How The Industrial Age Political-Economy Doesn't Work Anymore
, viz. Surviving Progress (2011)
... [more inside]
suggests a different way for dealing with obsolescent hardware, through modular design on a common base
from the mind of a 5-year-old tech geek. [more inside]
Alan Cooper and the Goal Directed Design Process The heart of the problem, he concludes, is that the people responsible for developing software products don’t know precisely what constitutes a good product. It follows that they also do not know what processes lead to a good product. In short, they are operating by trial and error, with outcomes like customer satisfaction achieved by little more than blind luck. By Hugh Dubberly, first published AIGA GAIN Journal, 2001
Why People Really Love Technology: An Interview with Genevieve Bell The thing I love about Intel researcher Genevieve Bell is that she finds surprising things by looking at what's left out of the dominant narratives about technology. She finds data that's ignored because it didn't fit into the paradigm of, say, how people adopt technology. The dominant narrative is that young men determine the popularity of phones, computers, websites, and the like. But when Bell looked at the data, the story we told ourselves about how the world worked was not reflected in the numbers.
That's why I wanted to talk to her about what gadgets people around the world might be using over the next decade. I figured she was someone who could look past the conventional wisdom and find the missing pieces of the future
Minimal Android minimal homescreen, minimal icons, themes, wallpapers or other minimalistic android things - as long as it is minimal and meant for android.
"Zhang Yue, founder and chairman of Broad Sustainable Building, is not a particularly humble man. A humble man would not have erected, on his firm’s corporate campus in the Chinese province of Hunan, a classical palace and a 130-foot replica of an Egyptian pyramid. A humble man, for that matter, would not have redirected Broad from its core business—manufacturing industrial air-conditioning units—to invent a new method of building skyscrapers. And a humble man certainly wouldn’t be putting up those skyscrapers at a pace never achieved in history." [Meet the Man Who Built a 30-Story Building in 15 Days
The first human-powered aircraft to achieve sustained and controlled flight, the Gossamer Condor (6.3 MB PDF)
, now belongs to the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum (2.2 MB JPG)
. So you'll need to build your own
Prototypes are usually the missing links in the evolution of human technology, the dead-ends of ideas that give way to the refinement of the final physical product. Prototypes aren't just for Darth Vader
. While the legal back and forth between Apple and Samsung continues, a treasure trove
of prototype designs
for Apple devices has been released to the public, showing insights into various design approaches and feature enhancements, including larger form-factor
and without kickstands
and landscape ports
and iPhones that parody the Sony logo
, show a different layout for camera elements
, and look remarkably like fourth-generation models
, as far back as 2005. On the other hand, some have made prototypes into the end goal itself, such as the folks at Dangerous Prototypes
, a site which features a new open-source electronic hardware project
each month. Some are just gratuitous fun
, while others are a bit more practical, such as one project that recycles old Nokia displays
and another that provides access to infrared signal
, useful for hacking together remote controls for all sorts of IR-based devices. Other prototypes of tomorrow's technology
are less concerned with shrinking down the guts of the invention itself, to make it disappear, but rather on how
with and integrate
physical representations of these ideas into our daily lives. Above all else, prototypes are always forward-looking and are therefore inherently optimistic expressions of human creativity: Even children
are getting into imagining the world of tomorrow.
Engadget's Distro talks to UI guru, Xerox PARC alumni, gadget collector
) and Microsoft Research Principal Researcher Bill Buxton
about the future of natural interfaces
Modern straight razor users are known to favor them for a variety of reasons. (related)
The New Aesthetic For a while now, I’ve been collecting images and things that seem to approach a new aesthetic of the future, which sounds more portentous than I mean. What I mean is that we’ve got frustrated with the NASA extropianism space-future, the failure of jetpacks, and we need to see the technologies we actually have with a new wonder.
is done by industrial designer, art director Emilio Gomariz
, and covers photography, art installations, product design, architecture, animation, technological and digital projects. Gomariz also does Base Times Height Divided By 2
, an experimental, scientific and technologic extension of Triangulation Blog.
Who gets to make money off WordPress?
Dust-up brewing in the world of WordPress as theme author Chris Pearson
head honcho Matt Mullenweg
battle out the question: Is a theme a 'derivative work'? [more inside]
Your Old Crap Website
- This blog is to celebrate the time when web design wasn’t limited by web standards and convention, and when the office geek was given full reign to set up the website on his own since the bosses probably couldn’t see the point in having one.
— design, strategy, technology, and common sense. [more inside]
How did life arise? What is information? In his recent dispatches
from The Technium
, Kevin Kelly would say extropy
). [previously 1
is a "monthly meeting of artists (sound/image/movement/whatever), designers, engineers, students, scientists, and other interested parties who are involved in the creative use of electricity." Started in NYC in 2000 by Douglas Repetto
, Director of Research at the Columbia University Computer Music Center
as well as one of Wired's 10 Sexiest Geeks
, there are now dozens all over the world
. Past presenters have been featured here on the blue. For instance Jeff Han
presented his multi-touch interface at dorkbot-nyc in April of 2006
. Miru Kim
presented her naked city spleen at dorkbot-nyc in October of 2006
. Bummed that there's not one in your own city? Start your own! [more inside]
is for both geeks and design freaks. Lots of interesting and WTF stuff here, like SandScapes
, Funky Forests
, Swarming Structures
, Colour Responsive Chairs
, and Jelly Architecture
. Not to mention the amazing Touch
, a tower with 4200 windows equipped with RGB color LEDs that can be controlled by passersby.
is a designer, with some interesting "what if" technology ideas, including a nanotech computer interface
and an ultra-thin electronic picture frame
Dean Kamen's Artificial "Luke" Arm
- Segway inventor reinvents the prosthetic arm: "I've been able to do stuff with this that I haven't, seriously haven't, done in 26 years... uh, pick up a banana, peel a banana and eat it without it squishening... I can't wait to get one of these in a real environment, a home environment, and actually my wife can't either. She's going, oh yeah, I got lots of stuff for you to do."
“I’m an old computer nerd,” Diener said. “I can do anything with computers. Nothing’s wrong with computers. But this is the worst way to run an election.”
NYTMag piece on electronic voting, voter confidence, and the impact of old-fashioned problems like printer jams, befuddled voters and volunteers, and interface design flaws. By Clive Thompson
The dangers of living in a zero-sum world economy
- naked capitalism
reprints (with added commentary) an FT article
by Martin Wolf on why it's vital for (civilised) society to sustain a 'positive-sum' world, otherwise: "A zero-sum economy leads, inevitably, to repression at home and plunder abroad." Wolf's solution? "The condition for success is successful investment in human ingenuity." Of course! Some
are calling for more socialism
, while others
would press on to build more megaprojects
. For me, at least part of the solution lies in environmental accounting
and natural capitalism
The Flow, by Paul Myerscough
That image gives way, quickly and successively, to a series of others: a young black woman smoking, smiling at the camera through a reinforced glass window; three teenage girls in a car, laughing, filmed through the windscreen; a whip-pan to the American flag, pierced by sunlight, drifting in the breeze; a DIY programme on a pixellated TV screen; a ride-along shot of a family in an oversized golf buggy; two different angles of a man alone in a lecture theatre; two more of traffic at night; a woman, suspicious of the camera, wearing a polka-dot dress and partly obscured by glassy reflections; a blurry shot of a long windowless corridor; a man wearing shades in a crowded street; a woman pursued down the cosmetics aisle of a supermarket; and, as Curtis comes to the end of his three short sentences, a woman seen jogging in the wing-mirror of a moving car.
The entire sequence takes 26 seconds. There’s too much to take in. Or, you don’t know what you’ve taken in, and how deep the impression has been.
Sites that know what you want before you do
The web is transforming from a paradigm of self-orchestrated searching to a world in which your shopping cart is full before you login.
aka Furniture Made With Frickin' Lasers. Swedish designers use motion capture technology to draw chairs and tables with light in mid-air. Their sketches are then built out of plastic by a laser into real pieces of furniture. Honestly, either one of these things would amaze me. I'm starting to like living in the future. (via bb
History of the Button
, a weblog devoted to 'tracing the history of interaction design through the history of the button, from flashlights to websites and beyond'. This presentation [4.5MB .pdf] provides a quick-fire pictorial history of the things we push to do stuff.
is a collection of presentations given at the most recent installment of the annual convention of leading t
ntertainers, and d
). From the $100 laptop
to the eradication of smallpox
to new ways
of visualizing data
and a charming and humorous look at education
, there's a lot to chew on and more to come.
Inspired yet? here's some more reading material
the man who once said, "there is nothing more aerodynamic than a wiener," created the iconic Wienermobile ,
but was also responsible for many other innovations in industrial design. He put the first window in a clothes dryer
, built a land-yacht and streamlined train
, developed an important precursor to the SUV
, and designed the wide-mouth peanut butter jar
and an aerodynamic vacuum cleaner
. More lastingly, he also created the idea of planned obsolescence
, the "desire to own something a little newer, a little better, a little sooner than is necessary."
The Bugatti Veyron
, according to Jeremy Clarkson on last night's Top Gear
, may well be the Concorde of cars. So Clarkson is a man prone to hyperbole, but this time the facts might just back him up. A throw-away remark from VW boss Ferdinand Piëch became the informal design brief. A 1000 horsepower car capable of the north side of 400kph/250mph. It looks futuristic
, but has the stats to match
. 0-60mph in 2.5 seconds. In an acceleration race with a McLaren F1 (the previous fastest supercar), the Veyron can give the F1 a head-start to 120mph, but will still beat it to 200mph. At 250mph, the 100 litre fuel tank will empty in 12 minutes, and you can brake to stand-still in just ten seconds (albeit covering the length of four football pitches in the process). The car will set you back most of UK £1,000,000 but that's barely an indicator: the few that exist are being sold at loss because they "just wanted to see if they could". With an industry facing shifting priorities, there may never be another super-car quite like this.
Web 2.0 overload
- "eHub is a constantly updated list of web applications, services, resources, blogs or sites with a focus on next generation web (web 2.0
), social software, blogging, Ajax, Ruby on Rails, location mapping, open source, folksonomy, design and digital media sharing." Tons of links to mashup apps like PervWatch
, etc, etc, etc...(note: a lot of these sites are in beta)