Archive for the ‘Interface and GUI’ Category

Design patterns

November 29th, 2010 by NearInteraction

This is a screenshot of  google apps management section.

Do you find anything familiar?  :-D

Interface = Finger + Pen

November 9th, 2010 by NearInteraction
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Touch screen interfaces may be trendy in gadget design, but that doesn’t mean they do everything elegantly. The finger is simply too blunt for many tasks. A new interface, called Manual Deskterity, attempts to combine the strengths of touch interaction with the precision of a pen.

“Everything, including touch, is best for something and worse for something else,” says Ken Hinckley, a research scientist at Microsoft who is involved with the project, which will be presented this week at the ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI) in Atlanta.

The prototype for Manual Deskterity is a drafting application built for the Microsoft Surface, a tabletop touchscreen. Users can perform typical touch actions, such as zooming in and out and manipulating images, but they can also use a pen to draw or annotate those images.

The interface’s most interesting features come out when the two types of interaction are combined. For example, a user can copy an object by holding it with one hand and then dragging the pen across the image, “peeling” off a new image that can be placed elsewhere on the screen. By combining pen and hand, users get access to features such as an exacto knife, a rubber stamp, and brush painting.

Hinckley says the researchers videotaped users working on visual projects with sketchbooks, scissors, glue, and other typical physical art supplies. They noticed that people tended to hold an image with one hand while making notes about it or doing other work related to it with the other. The researchers decided to incorporate this in their interface–touching an object onscreen with a free hand indicates that the actions performed with the pen relate to that object.

Hinckley acknowledges that the interface includes a lot of tricks that users need to learn. But he thinks this is true of most interfaces. “This idea that people just walk up with an expectation of how a [natural user interface] should work is a myth,” he says.

Hinckley believes that natural user interfaces can ease the learning process by engaging muscle memory, rather than forcing users to memorizes sequences of commands or the layout of menus. If the work is successful, Hinckley says it will show how different sorts of input can be used in combination.

Hinckley also thinks it’s a mistake to focus on devices that work with touch input alone. He says, “The question is not, ‘How do I design for touch?’ or ‘How do I design for pen?’ We should be asking, ‘What is the correct division of labor in the interface for pen and touch interactions such that they complement one another?’”

The researchers plan to follow up by adapting their interface to work on mobile devices.

The wilderness downtown

October 30th, 2010 by NearInteraction

“This film is processor intensive. Please shut down other programs and close unnecessary browser tabs.Doing this will enhance your viewing experience. ”

I also recomend you minimize main browser window after the film start.

Check it out.

(link via blarmino.)

FaceTime for Mac

October 25th, 2010 by NearInteraction

Download the Beta.

Apple Awarded ‘Anti-Sexting’ Patent

October 14th, 2010 by NearInteraction

“A newly-awarded Apple patent addressing parental controls for text-based communication is receiving a considerable amount of attention from the mainstream press today for its ties to the hot-button issue of “sexting”, the sending of sexually-explicit messages that is of growing concern to many parents.

Apple’s patent, which was filed in January 2008 and first revealed in July 2009 when the application for it was made public, addresses the means by which a filtering system could be used to block messages such as emails and texts containing objectionable material according to user-defined criteria.

The invention, in various embodiments, addresses deficiencies in existing attempts at solutions by providing systems, methods and devices that enable an administrator to control the text-based communications of a user of a text-based communications device through an administrative mode of an intelligent text-based communication control unit or application. The text-based communication control application filters incoming and/or outgoing text-based communications based on administrator-defined criteria.

An entire message identified by the filter could be blocked, or the objectionable content could simply be stripped out while the remainder of the message is allowed to be sent or received.

Apple’s focus extends beyond that of simply addressing objectionable content, noting that the feature could be used in an educational enviroment to encourage proper spelling and grammar or usage of certain vocabulary words, or to set quotas for usage of foreign words by a student studying a new language.”

(via macrumors)

Multi-touch clearly lacking…

September 27th, 2010 by NearInteraction

Complete with all aspects of what multi-touch claims to best at… intuitive, playful, a service point with information, visual networking … yet a clear example of how essential good interface design is.

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Consider that the reality of the interface is the information system to the users; -What users want is clear feedback to their actions -answers to their questions. A usable application is much more than clever code and (not applicable in this case) eye-candy.

touchless control technology

August 16th, 2010 by NearInteraction

“fraunhofer’s fit is the latest touchless control system that uses gestures to control computer interfaces.
the design is unique because it requires no special equipment, gloves or other wearable controllers.
the user simply places their hands in the air in front of a camera. the computer can then sense their
hand and can visually see each finger. the users movements are then translated on screen allowing
them to manipulate objects through various gestures and motions. the system is so sophisticated it
can operate in three-dimensions, allowing various objects to be manipulated at varying depths.”

Via Designboom, video after the Jump.

Pranav Mistry: The thrilling potential of SixthSense technology

February 1st, 2010 by NearInteraction
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XBox360, Project Natal

July 16th, 2009 by NearInteraction

Future of Interface Design

May 20th, 2009 by NearInteraction

What will interfaces be like in 2020? It’s hard to predict what the future will be made of, but current experiments regularly give us hints of what 2020’s interfaces could look like. Don’t take what you read in this article for granted, but be assured that the future will be a cool place for geeks to live in.