What if we could grow electronics in a lab, using carefully engineered bacteria rather than wires, plastic, and lithium? At MIT, computer interaction researchers are doing just that.
One day, astronauts on deep space missions may explore the surface of unknown planets remotely—using a rover while they remain in orbit. That concept, though it sounds radically far-off, just got an important dry run.
It feels like a wave of pressure-sensitive tactile interfaces has been about to crest for years. But a pair of engineers believe they’ve built the hardware and software that could delivers on that promise—and they’ve funded the first round of production in just a couple of hours.
Smartwatches, tablets, and phones are great, but they’re not exactly futuristic technology. To find that, you have to look to the scientists and designers who are prototyping entirely new kinds of devices.
It's pretty rare that a new product truly surprises us. But today Amazon did just that, introducing Echo, a talking, listening piece of electronic furniture. It's like having the internet on your kitchen table, cracking jokes and settling bets, and it's the most innovative device Amazon's made in years.
Have you ever held your smartphone up to your laptop screen and thought about how cool it would be if the two devices could work together, physically? Well now, thanks to a team from the MIT Media Lab, they can. New software lets you use your smartphone as an extra interface for a computer, and it looks awesome.
When touchscreens came to the first iPhone, they felt like a marvelous new way to interact with the devices in our hands. Dirty or wet or gloved fingers reveal the limitations of the touchscreen, though, and touchless interfaces may be closer than you think—a lightly modified ordinary phone can detect hand gestures…
The future of gesture control could be snapped right onto your existing smartphone. That's the concept behind Fuffr, an iPhone case that turns the empty space around your phone into a Leap Motion-style gestural interface.
Is pinch-to-zoom just too tough to remember? What about tap to highlight? Well, fret not dear user: A solution for you, the frazzled, confused technological rube that just misses the good old days of dry erase boards and magnifying glasses, has arrived.
Much has changed in our world in the past decade. Remember 2003? 50 Cent was still on top, as was Dubya, and you were hot shit if your cellphone had a color screen. Imagine knowing that in ten years, we'd interact with tech using our voices, our gestures, and even our brainwaves. 2013, in particular, has been a year…
Touchscreens are flat and hard by necessity—thanks to their dense layers of glass, conductive metal, and capacitors. But as haptic interfaces start to appear in commercial gadgets, touchscreen devices are poised to become even more… touchy. Enter Eunhee Jo, a Korean designer who’s spending the next year as a designer…
Science fiction is crammed full of some excellent—and awful—computer interfaces. But, as Chris Noessel explains in this talk, we can learn an awful lot from what we see on screen.
We spend a lot of our time running our greasy little fingers over all kinds of touchscreens, but they just sit there unmoving as untouchable blocks of colors dart around beneath the surface. The Obake display isn't quite so lifeless, and it's just begging to be poked and prodded.
There's a lot of talk that technology is going to kill the book, eBooks specifically. It's true that physical books are still pretty low-tech, but that doesn't mean they have to stay that way. Maybe there could be a future where books are actually computer peripherals. If so, the prototype Elektrobiblioteka is a…
Most of the time the computer interfaces we see in Hollywood flicks are all sorts of ridiculous. They mix glam with hints of what we might expect in the future. Sometimes that's Minority Report (real, see MIT), sometimes it's this:
Research in Motion announced this morning that it acquired Swedish interface design firm TAT, whose initials stand for The Astonishing Tribe. That could make future BlackBerry phones—not to mention the upcoming Playbook tablet—a whole lot more exciting.
Steve Ballmer promised Windows 7 tablets up the wazoo at the Worldwide Partner Conference last month, and at least one UI firm is working to prove him right with a "page turning" UI, deliciously named Macallan.