Future of Media

ACM's Interactions magazine

I'm surprised I didn't know this one already: http://interactions.acm.org/

Interactions is a bimonthly publication of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and is distributed to all members of SIGCHI. Lots of interesting things in here and broader than I expected, e.g.:

If Networked Smart Things Could Draw Self Portraits...

I rediscovered this Boing Boing post that was shared by Mark Kusnicki last year:

Designers Irene Pereyra and Tom Klinkowstein recently exhibited their wall-sized digram called "A Day in the Life of a Networked Designer's Smart Things or A Day in a Designer's Networked Smart Things, 2030." The map not only presents a narrative of how a designer "gets things done with the help of all her smart things" but at a higher level also seems to hint at how we may deal with mass amounts of information in the future.

Interactivos?'08 · Vision Play: Open call for projects (co-lead by OCAD's Simone Jones)

Medialab-Prado issues a call for the submission of projects to be
carried out as part of the Interactivos?'08: Vision Play event,
which will take place from 30 May to 14 June 2008 in Madrid, Spain. Deadline: 25th April

Project development advanced workshop
Lead by: Álvaro Cassinelli, Simone Jones

With the participation of the research group Light, space and

Another PARC reference for Smart Book

Here's an interesting paper from PARC. I don't buy the premise -- to create a 3D virtual book -- but the paper raises some useful overlaps with our smart book idea, e.g. references, context, vocabulary.


Abstract: This paper describes the 3Book, a 3D interactive visualization of a codex book as a component for various digital library and sensemaking systems. The book is designed to hold large books and to support sensemaking operations by readers. The book includes methods in which the automatic semantic analysis of the book's content is used to dynamically tailor access. (Update)

Assessing 2D barcodes for Smart Book functionality

One option for 'automating links' in the smartbook might be to use 2D barcodes to link to the virtual version of the book, plus additional resources etc. This post assesses potential for 2D barcodes incl. prelim. SWOT analysis.

Smart Book concept precedent: Mark Weiser at PARC (of course)

Kevin Kelly's prescient 1994 book Out of Control is online its entirety, searchable, linkable etc. This chapter covers the smart book concept as envisioned early on, naturally enough by one of the progenators of dataspace: Mark Weiser at Xerox Parc


The research labs of Xerox in Palo Alto, California (PARC), invented, but unfortunately never exploited, the signature elements of the first friendly Macintosh computers. Not to be burned twice, PARC intends to fully exploit yet another radical (and potentially profitable) concept brewing in their labs now. Mark Weiser, young and cheerful, is director of a Xerox initiative to view the office as a superorganism -- a networked being composed of many interlinked parts.

The glassy offices of PARC perch on a Bay Area hill overlooking Silicon Valley. When I visit Weiser he is wearing a loud yellow shirt flanked by red suspenders. He smiles constantly, as if inventing the future was a big joke and I'm in on it. I take the couch, an obligatory furnishing in hacker dens, even posh hacker dens like these at Xerox. Weiser is too animated to sit; he's waving his arms -- a marker in one hand -- in front of a huge white board that runs from the floor to the ceiling. This is complicated, his arms say, you are going to need to see it. The picture Weiser begins drawing on the white board looks like a diagram of a Roman army. Down at the bottom are one hundred small units. Above it are ten medium-size units. Perched at the top level is one large unit. The army that Weiser is drawing is a field of Room Organisms.

What I really want, Weiser is telling me, is an mob of tiny smart objects. One hundred small things throughout my office that have a uniform, dim awareness of each other, of themselves, and of me. My room becomes a supercolony of quasi-smart bits. What you want, he says, is every book on your shelf to have a chip embedded in it so that it keeps track of where it is in the room, when it was last open, and to what page. The chip might even have a dynamic copy of the book's index that will link itself to your computer database when you first bring the book into the room. The book now has a community presence. All information stored on a shelf as, say, books or videotapes are implanted with a cheap chip to communicate both where they are and what they are about.

SmartBook 2

The “Smart Tagged” Book that is Smart, Readable and Searchable:
A Third Option for Publishers and a Potential Motorola – Google – Lulu.com – Beal Centre Collaboration

Prepared by Robert K. Logan ()

SmartBook 1

The “Smart Tagged” Book that is Smart, Readable and Searchable:
A Third Option for Publishers

A Potential Motorola – Google – Lulu.com – Beal Centre Collaboration

Abstract: We are proposing a book that is smart, searchable and readable. We will analyze this opportunity using the New Product Filter developed at the Beal Centre.

Family Inchoate – version 03-28-3008

Family Inchoate:
Coterminous Kinship in Emergent Game Worlds

Prepared by Mark Outhwaite | March 2008.

GVA speaking next Fri in Together Elsewhere: Toronto/Montreal/Lille

On Friday Feb. 1st, I'll be speaking in this Ryerson University-organized international conference:

family inchoate - visual essay | mrkultra | august 2007

The attached visual essay was created and rendered in August 2007 using a personal computer.


more to follow, in the future.

One big step closer to e-book reality: Amazon Kindle

Just announced last month is Amazon's strangely styled and potentially disruptive new e-book reader, dubbed "Kindle."

I don't know about you but that title makes me think of Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451... Get video, images and blurbs from Amazon or google it for alternate perspectives.


How many media moguls have dreamed of the ability to directly influence their audience's thoughts? (click for story)

The dream has existed for as long as we can imagine to be able to read people's thoughts. In cold-war spy stories there were drugs to extract them; then there was mass media to try and influence them; there is emerging research and theories on how to anticipate them.

With the latest technology the future seems to be going the way of Star Trek after all - or is this just a re-emergence of the failed electric-shock therapies of the early 20th century? Was Frankenstein to cognitive science what Sputnik was to space exploration?

In any case, the study of cognition is at the root of both innovation and enterprise. Both are driven by market forces - which can be reduced to want. Unfortunately many people don't know what they want, hence the role for marketing and mass media to exhibit the options to the world, creating want where previously there was ignorance.

What would happen if we really did know what we wanted, or if we could precisely and absolutely shape what other people want?

Family Inchoate Paper_ Intro _ 10-04-2007

"What the body creates is as much of an expression of its DNA as the body itself."

- Ghost in the Shell– Innocence 2004

Empowerment: Surfing the Self

Ze Frank recently used a beach/waves metaphor to describe tech-world faddiness.

His discussion recalled to me that Alex, for a time, also poked around a surfing metaphor to describe methods of adaptive inquiry.

Obsessed as I am with humanist psychology, personality theories, the work/play dichotomy and human empowerment, I offer an extension of this wave-surfing metaphor in regards to the process of ‘becoming the self.’

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