frank's blog

Wow! Microsoft Builds A Functioning ‘Holodesk’

Posted in film, innovation, pioneers by aldorf on October 20, 2011

It’s a start but – wow – that’s amazing and something the world has been waiting for since 1987. It’s not quite a Holodeck, but it’s tantalizingly close.

The reasearch arm of Microsoft, unlike the rest of the company, spends its days spinning crazed dreams into hacked reality.

Today Microsoft Research released a rather fascinating demonstration of one of its projects, what it calls a ‘holodesk,’ which has the potential to change the way we physically interact with digital items. Sounds trippy? That’s because it is. The user, looking down on a pane of glass, sees items (balls, blocks, whatever) on that screen. With their hands underneath the glass, they can move their appendages and digits and prod those images as if they were directly touching them.

It’s a bridge, essentially, between the physical and the digital. Microsoft dubs the idea at the “research project” stage only, so don’t get your hopes up about getting one for yourself. And of course, it uses a Kinect.

Now, if this is only a research project, why does it matter? Microsoft, as a company, is working on all fronts to build on what it calls ‘natural user interfac[ing].” What this means is that the firm is looking past the keyboard and mouse (blasphemy) and is instead working with touch, voice, and so forth. This is especially important in the tablet world that the company is so desperately behind in.

it’s hard not to wish that more of what Microsoft Research was market-ready. (via thenextweb)

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Random Hacks of Kindness

Posted in conference, ideas, innovation, internet by aldorf on August 12, 2011

 

 

What a great idea! (via rhok.org)

Random Hacks of Kindness is a community of innovation focused on developing practical open source solutions to disaster risk management and climate change adaptation challenges. Random Hacks of Kindness was founded in 2009 in partnership between Google, Microsoft, Yahoo!, NASA and the World Bank.

Since then thousands of volunteers have worked on applications that are already making an impact. I’m OK, an SMS service that lets people inform their families of their status, was used on the ground during the devastating earthquakes in Haiti and Chile in 2010. The World Bank is piloting CHASM, software for visualizing landslide risk, in the Caribbean. Other apps have received support and interest from governments, NGOs and international organizations around the world.

How it Works

RHoK works by bringing together experts in development and volunteers with a broad set of skills in software development and design. The goal is to produce practical open source solutions to development problems. Events give the community an opportunity to sprint on projects, but the community continues to collaborate around the year.

RHoK Highlights

The RHoK community grew rapidly in 2010, with volunteer-organized events taking place in 26 cities around the globe, over 2000 registrants and resulting in 120 distinct projects worked on.

Mad Presentation Skills – Epic Google Docs Animation

Posted in Animation, design, ideas, inspiration, Media by aldorf on December 20, 2010

See the presentation (and wait for it to load – the file is heavy!): http://goo.gl/6MJwH | 3 animators. 3 days (sort of). 3 Locations. 1 Google Doc. www.demoslam.com

Forecast: Apple Goes Search Engine?

Posted in web by aldorf on January 18, 2010

BusinessWeek cover story. A bold forecast by Jonathan Yarmis, researcher at Ovum.

“I fully expect [Apple] to do something in search.”…“If there’s all these advertising dollars to be won, why would it want Google on its iPhones?”

Online ads. Microsoft Will Let You Generate Your Own

Posted in Media, web by aldorf on January 17, 2010

Microsoft has filed for a patent related to how users can generate their own advertisements on social networks, according to a published report.In the patent, the company notes that ads in social networks aren’t that effective because of the low relevance to the users. With this technique, an original, less-effective ad can be supplemented with users reviews, both positive and negative. Read full article here.

Wow…

Posted in ideas by aldorf on November 24, 2009

another source: here.

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