Nokia Research recently gave me a small grant to conduct a research project in Summer, 2011. Here’s the basic description:
This project explores the design opportunities in objects that seem to have inner lives through their expressive behavior.
A lot of doubters are making a classic mistake in evaluating Apple’s iPad. They did the same thing after the initial announcement for the iPhone, or for that matter the Toyota Prius. The mistake is thinking in terms of existing categories and value propositions. For the iPad, the doubt seems to boil down to: “I don’t like it because it doesn’t fit my ideal for a great laptop.” The critiques don’t always state it those terms, but I think that’s where it’s coming from. No camera, no keyboard, no multi-tasking, no Flash (okay, actually Safari on the iPad really does need that), etc. – these are standard expectations for a laptop.
I’m very interested in how tangible objects can be used in interesting ways to interact with information on screens. This video collects together a series of experiments on the use of a range of object prototypes. In making these, I imagined a screen in front of me (in some cases a standard size screen, in other cases a wall sized screen), and manipulated the various objects as if I was controlling and interacting with content on the screen. It was more an experiment in the affordance of the objects in relation to screens than thinking of specific applications.
View Video (95meg)