Hardware designer Matt Webb joins the show to discuss why it’s so difficult to design great physical products, how our expectations have changed recently, and why he loves wearing his Snapchat Spectacles to cricket matches.
Tagged with “hardware” (20)
The O’Reilly Bots Podcast: Conversational interfaces for the Internet of Things.
In this episode of the O’Reilly Bots Podcast, I speak with Tom Coates, co-founder of Thington, a service layer for the Internet of Things. Thington provides a conversational, messaging-like interface for controlling devices like lights and thermostats, but it’s also conversational at a deeper level: its very architecture treats the interactions between different devices like a conversation, allowing devices to make announcements to any other device that cares to listen.Coates explains how Thington operates in a way analogous to social media; in fact, he calls it “a Twitter for devices.” Just as people engage with each other in a commons, devices chat with each other in Thington’s messaging commons. He also discusses the value of human-readable output and the challenges involved in writing human-understandable scripts.
Coates’ blog post “The Shape of Things,” an overview of how connected devices will communicate with humans
Google Translate’s interlingua
The O’Reilly Artificial Intelligence conference, June 27-29, 2017, in New York
Installing Windows might take 5,000 years without the compiler, a remarkable innovation which made modern computing possible. Tim Harford tells a compelling story which has at its heart a pioneering woman called Grace Hopper who – along the way – single-handedly invented the idea of open source software too.
The compiler evolved into COBOL – one of the first computer languages – and led to the distinction between hardware and software.
From Velocity Amsterdam 2015: The Physical Web is an approach to unleash the core superpower of the web: interaction on demand. People should be able to walk up to any smart device – a vending machine, a poster, a toy, a bus stop, a rental car – and not have to download an app first. Everything should be just a tap away.
Why is this important? The number of smart devices is going to explode, and the assumption that each new device will require its own application just isn’t realistic. We need a system that lets anyone interact with any device at any time. The Physical Web isn’t about replacing native apps: it’s about enabling interaction when native apps just aren’t practical.
Why is this open source? The Physical Web must be an open standard that everyone can use. By creating a common web standard that any device can use to offer interaction, a new range of services becomes possible.
How does this change things? Once any smart device can have a web address, the entire overhead of an app seems a bit backward. The Physical Web approach unlocks tiny use cases that would never be practical: - A cat collar would let you call to find the owner - A bus tells you its next stop - Parking meters can pay in the cloud using the phone’s internet connection - Any store, no matter how small, can offer an online experience when you walk in - A ZipCar broadcasts a signup page,…
This week we sit down with, newly married couple, Josh Clark and Liza Kindred about the future of wearables. We chat about a magic wand Josh made to control his stereo, Liza’s WIFI hotspot handbag, and blue-sky some ideas about what the future looks like without drumpants.
Life now. Data later. In this week’s podcast guest Carla Diana, a product designer, discusses this mantra and other attributes designers should consider when developing connected products.
A chat about the future of UI/UX design with Alasdair Allan, Josh Marinacci and Tony Santos.
For Episode 3, I interviewed the designer and maker Brendan Dawes. Brendan’s known for early interactive web projects like Psycho Studio, that allows users to remix Hitchcock’s famous shower scene themselves. He’s also known for his physical projects, such as the Moviepeg and Popa phone accessories, and devices that cross the digital/physical divide, such as the Happiness machine, an internet-connected printer that prints random happy thoughts from people across the web.
We talk about making digital stuff tangible, design, art and simplicity, remixes and supercuts, and how makers can get their work out into the world for people to see.
We’re now entering the third industrial revolution, Anderson said. The first one, which began with the spinning jenny in 1776, doubled the human life span and set population soaring. From the demographic perspective, "it’s as if nothing happened before the Industrial Revolution."
The next revolution was digital. Formerly industrial processes like printing were democratized with desktop publishing. The "cognitive surplus" of formerly passive consumers was released into an endless variety of personal creativity. Then distribution was democratized by the Web, which is "scale agnostic and credentials agnostic." Anyone can potentially reach 7 billion people.
The third revolution is digital manufacturing, which combines the gains of the first two revolutions. Factory robots, which anyone can hire, have become general purpose and extremely fast. They allow "lights-out manufacturing," that goes all night and all weekend.
"This will reverse the arrow of globalization," Anderson said. "The centuries of quest for cheaper labor is over. Labor arbitrage no longer drives trade." The advantages of speed and flexibility give the advantage to "locavore" manufacturing because "Closer is faster." Innovation is released from the dead weight of large-batch commitments. Designers now can sit next to the robots building their designs and make adjustments in real time.
Thus the Makers Movement. Since 2006, Maker Faires, Hackerspaces, and TechShops (equipped with laser cutters, 3D printers, and CAD design software) have proliferated in the US and around the world. Anderson said he got chills when, with the free CAD program Autodesk 123D, he finished designing an object and moused up to click the button that used to say "Print." This one said "Make." A 3D printer commenced building his design.
Playing with Minecraft, "kids are becoming fluent in polygons." With programs like 123D Catch you can take a series of photos with your iPhone of any object, and the software will create a computer model of it. "There is no copyright on physical stuff," Anderson pointed out. The slogan that liberated music was "Rip. Mix. Burn." The new slogan is "Rip. Mod. Make."
I asked Anderson, "But isn’t this Makers thing kind of trivial, just trailing-edge innovation?" "That’s why it’s so powerful," Anderson said. "Remember how trivial the first personal computers seemed?"
— by Stewart Brand
Native applications are a remnant of the Jurassic period of computer history. We will look back on these past 10 years as the time we finally grew out of our desktop mindset and started down the path of writing apps for an infinite number of platforms. As the cost of computation and connectivity plummets, manufacturers are going to put ‘interactivity’ into every device. Some of this will be trivial: my power adaptor knows it’s charging history. Some of it will be control related: my television will be grand central for my smart home. But at it’s heart, we’ll be swimming in world where every device will have ‘an app’. What will it take for us to get here, what technologies will it take to make this happen?
This talk will discuss how the principles of the open web must apply not only to prototocols but to hardware as well. How can we build a ‘DNS for hardware’ so the menagerie of devices has a chance for working together?
Scott Jenson used to work at Apple, developing the Human Interface guidelines and working on the Newton, no less. He also worked at Symbian and Google so he knows all about mobile devices of all kinds.
Scott is currently Creative Director at Frog Design where he has been writing about the coming zombie apocalypse.
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