Showing all posts tagged technology:

How Computer Became Ubiquitous - Through the Lens of Law & Order

The first Law & Order computer. Blurry, but not on, according to Thompson. Season 1, Episode 1.

A typical early-'90s computer—off to the side and not powered up. Season 1, Episode 22.

By the fifth season, computers began appearing on characters' desks. Season 5, Episode 89.

A modern pose: A character checks her phone in close proximity to other humans. Season 18, Episode 411.

Doherty Threshold Response Time

I was watching Season 1 Episode 4 of Halt and Catch Fire and this came up. Here's a short clip I recorded.


On a related note, here’s a research done by Microsoft on touch latency. This takes me back to the days of Windows Tablet PC when manufacturers were competing to see who has the lowest latency in digitizer input.



Relevant Link:

How to Learn to Use Something

Smartphones and laptops seem so ubiquitous to us all. But in reality, the ubiquitousness we experience every day is based on a series of learned behaviors. Someone once said that, "The only intuitive interface is the nipple. Everything else is learned."

For example, using something as simple as magazine seems like a piece of cake, but in reality a series of interaction involved in using such object is quite complex — as depicted in the parody of iPad reader/ebook apps below created by Khoi Vinh.

Khoi Vinh and Andrew Losowsky poking fun at the failures of magazines on iPad



Often times, conjecturing up an image of known disposition to communicate how a system works is very effective. When Apple released Apple Macintosh 128k, an one of a kind personal computer ever released, Apple introduced a handful of mental models to help understand basic principles such as file system and page scrolling that were not clearly understood at the time.


Apple Macintosh manual - explaining how mouse works


Apple Macintosh manual - explaining how scrolling a page works


Apple Macintosh manual - explaining how file system works

Play Macintosh 128K Guided Tour Tape (1984)

Levitating Particle Display Opens Up New Possibilities in HCI








Having physical particles levitate to form a display almost seems like a small step towards hologram. But in terms of usability, this technology represents a huge leap towards possibly including physical and haptic feedback while interacting with three-dimensional images with hand gestures. Imagine being able to clasp your hand(s) to grab the particles to move an object, having physics that allow you to push or pull particles with the palm of your hand or morphing an object by sculpting it with your hands. The race between tactile display and levitating particle display is definitely on.


via Gizmodo

Paul Otlet's Forgotten Internet from 1930s





"Everything in the universe, and everything of man, would be registered at a distance as it was produced. In this way a moving image of the world will be established, a true mirror of his memory. From a distance, everyone will be able to read text, enlarged and limited to the desired subject, projected on an individual screen. In this way, everyone from his armchair will be able to contemplate the whole of creation, in whole or in certain parts." -- Monde by Paul Otlet, 1935

"With war clouds gathering, Wells urged the crowd to focus their attention on the potential of networked information to bring about a transformation of the human condition. 'The world has to pull its mind together,' he said, 'This synthesis of knowledge upon which you are working is the necessary beginning of a new world.' The next year, Wells published a collection of essays on this theme under the title World Brain. 'The whole human memory can be, and probably in a short time will be, made accessible to every individual,' he wrote. “It can have at once the concentration of a craniate animal and the diffused vitality of an amoeba."

"He imagined the eventual emergence of a 'super-human memory' fanning out across the globe in a 'world-wide network' that would foster cooperation among the world’s universities, research institutions, and other centers of intellectual life. The optimism of the 1937 conference proved short-lived. In 1940 the Nazis invaded Belgium. A Nazi delegation interrogated Otlet about his 'foreign contacts.' Soon enough, Nazi troops stormed the Palais Mondial, destroying much of the collection to make room for an exhibition of Third Reich art."

Symbiotic Interaction: Kids Learn English by Video Chatting with Lonely Elderly Americans



"It's such a great, simple idea: Young Brazilians want to learn English. Elderly Americans living in retirement homes just want someone to talk to. Why not connect them? FCB Brazil did just that with its "Speaking Exchange" project for CNA language schools."

This is such a perfect example of what I call “symbiotic interaction," where both users benefit from each other while individual user’s goals are different from each other — mediated by a system.