Notes about ui

December 2, 2011 permalink

Banaphone Invoked Computing

Banana Phone And Pizza Box Laptop PC – Invoked Computing For Ubiquitous AR

Usually “augmented reality” involves using a camera device to view an overlay of information or digital control on top of a video screen of some kind (say an iPhone or webcam/desktop), but this is kind of the opposite: having a camera+projector system that can map your intents onto everyday objects around the house for “invoked computing”.

Mostly I share this because I like this bananaphone demo:

There is a banana scenario where the person takes a banana out of a fruit bowl and brings it closer to his ear. A high speed camera tracks the banana; a parametric speaker array directs the sound in a narrow beam. The person talks into the banana as if it were a conventional phone.

(Via PhysOrg via ACM TechNews)

October 16, 2011 permalink

Earliest Web Browsers

Ars Technica has up a history article on the early web browsers, a rare glimpse into the largely-forgotten software that beat NCSA Mosaic to the punch but didn’t quite make it into pop culture consciousness (seen above is ViolaWWW, notable for early stabs at browsing history, bookmarks, styles, and even embedded scripting — probably also the first web browser I remember using on my Slackware copy of X Windows circa 1994! </old>).

For all of the developments in web technology since 1991, it’s remarkable to see how many UI features and browsing concepts emerged almost immediately and are still with us today.