future touch screens have no lag

March 27, 2012

Most touch panels and controllers today suffer from about a 100ms delay and while most people got used to it, I still find it really annoying.

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And so does Microsoft as they are putting money into the task of getting rid of that lag. Microsoft Research has figured out a way to get the delay down to 1 ms.

check out the video below to see the difference.

Pretty awesome and I can’t wait to see this technology going mainstream and into all kinds of touch devices.

@maniac13


The Hunger Games and HTML5

March 21, 2012

How do those 2 fit together you ask? Microsoft has teamed up with Lionsgate to show off the latest HTML5 techniques (movie-like effect: stream, lens flare and video projections) and to promote IE9.

Check it out here

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I had some issues getting onto the page, but I think it is because it is making the rounds in the internet and everybody is checking it out.

Nevertheless it is a pretty nifty and beautiful site and you have the ability to connect it to your facebook and your friends appear on billboards and screens.

The site also gives you some exclusive movie content and there are 2 easter eggs that reveal 2 never before seen clips.

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  • 1. In the Control Room you can type in “ivolunteer” on your keyboard after clicking on the map section
  • 2. In the Avenue of Tributes you can click on Katniss and then Peeta to reveal a clip from the training center

I can’t wait for the movie to come out as it looks great and it looks like HTML5 is being pushed to its boundaries on this site.

Check out the trailer if you haven’t seen it.

@maniac13


Control Windows 8 by looking at it

January 10, 2012

I am very excited about the forthcoming Windows 8 and I have been playing around with it since the Developer Preview was released.

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We have a big touchscreen in the office here so it is perfect for the Metro UI, but I have to say that the mouse interaction on a laptop without a touchscreen is very average.

Along came Tobii and at first you think it is just another gimmick, but everybody on the net who has actually tried it is blown away by it.

Tobii comes with an eye control device, a rectangular glass obilisk that is attached to the hinge of the laptop. It requires a personal calibration and off you go. It also controls all the swipe gestures available in Windows 8.

But enough said, check it out in the video.

here is another video of it in action

can’t wait to try it out

@maniac13


Microsoft announces new Kinect Hardware for Windows in early 2012

November 23, 2011

Since the announcement of Kinect for Windows at the start of November, many have asked if there will be PC-specific Kinect hardware coming. Microsoft confirmed today that there will indeed be a new Kinect device for Windows PCs.

Simple changes include shortening the USB cable to ensure reliability across a broad range of computers and the inclusion of a small dongle to improve coexistence with other USB peripherals.  Of particular interest to developers will be the new firmware which enables the depth camera to see objects as close as 50 centimeters in front of the device without losing accuracy or precision, with graceful degradation down to 40 centimeters.  “Near Mode” will enable a whole new class of “close up” applications, beyond the living room scenarios for Kinect for Xbox 360.

The full press release contains more details including the announcement of new support and mentoring programs for Kinect development.

Expect the new hardware in early 2012.

~@bradyohalloran


Free your mouse (or your desk)

September 13, 2011

having worked in IT before and now working on lots of cool emerging technologies and experiences, I always seem to have multiple PCs on my desk that I am simultaneously working on.

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At some stage I had 4 keyboards and 4 mice on my desk and no more space for my lunch. So I am constantly looking for solutions for that and I have played around with software and hardware KVMs. Most of them are buggy and the hardware ones just add too many cables to my desk.

Today I came across a little tool build by a developer in the Microsoft Garage project called Mouse without borders.

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Simply put it is a software kvm that can connect 4 of your PCs that are on the same network and you can use your 1 keyboard and mouse for all of them.

A simple installer and setup process and you are up and running. It works quite seamlessly and you can easily configure the location of your physical machine – just drive your mouse out of the screen towards the next and it will appear there.

Other feature are copy and paste, drag files across

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you can download it here and try it for yourself.

let me know your thoughts in the comments.

@maniac13


Microsoft Research shows off the life after touch

February 27, 2011

By now we all experienced kinect one way or another and I personally really enjoy my kinect at home.

Kinect has been talked and hacked a lot and most people can see much more in it than just a game controller.

Looks like MS Research is thinking the same thing and in the video below they are showing off some cool things, like head tracking, glasses free 3D, gesture based interfaces and more.

As we all know from past experiences, these may or may not happen, but right now they are pretty cool.

thanks engadget

@maniac13


Kinect, Xbox Live and Windows Phone 7 – the future

February 15, 2011

this is a little video how Microsoft is envisioning Kincet working with Windows Phone 7.

Looks to me like my wife will have a lot of fun with that one 🙂

@maniac13


Amnesia Razorfish Announces Gesture Sharing for Smartphones and Tablets using Microsoft Surface (Press Release)

January 25, 2011

Amnesia Razorfish today announced the launch of Amnesia Connect – a software breakthrough, which allows instant and seamless sharing and transfer of any content such as photos, music or embedded apps between multiple handheld devices using a Microsoft Surface table using a single gesture.

Launched today, Amnesia Razorfish Connect can be viewed at: http://vimeo.com/18859503 and there is more information on the software at: www.amnesiarazorfish.com.au/

Amnesia Razorfish Connect has been developed entirely in-house at Amnesia Razorfish by the creative and emerging technology teams.

Following months of research and development, Amnesia Razorfish has replaced the typical ‘send and receive’ interface with a more natural ‘gesture-based’ interface. A smartphone owner can now move their content freely between two devices by simply dragging content off their phone onto a Microsoft Surface Table and back onto another device instantly.

Amnesia Razorfish Founder and Executive Creative Director Iain McDonald said: “The previous barriers which stood in the way of getting content on or off your phone have been completely removed with this software.

“In the past device integration like this has been mainly confined to Hollywood movies or smoke and mirror demos, so we set ourselves the challenge of making it real.

“It took a while to crack, but the result speaks for itself – all the buttons are gone and sharing content is now completely instinctive. In a world where smartphones are becoming omnipresent, this kind of software opens another world of ideas for brands.”

Amnesia Connect allows gesture transfer of mobile content instantly

The smartphone user can transfer new free or commercial content from the table by dragging it directly to their phone with a single swipe – then before full transfer takes place, a preview instantly visible as a live motion tracked ‘lens preview’ through the phone display – similar to an X-ray through to the table.

For example, in less than a few seconds a photo can be taken on one device and dragged effortlessly onto the Surface table and then directly onto another device running on Amnesia Connect software.

“The new software promises a range of new possibilities for the retail and hospitality industries in particular. In the near future we envisage a Smartphone user being to complete commercial transactions for both physical and digital content,” McDonald said.

Amnesia Connect in action

The Amnesia Connect software works with all Apple IOS devices and is being further developed to work seamlessly with Android, Windows Phone and BlackBerry Smartphones.

Amnesia Razorfish Connect utilises a range of technologies including Wi-Fi, proximity detection, unique ID and phone accelerometer, depending on the type of phone and location.

For in-store transactions, NFC (Near-Field-Communications) has been proposed as one of several possibilities for payment transactions, although a pre-authenticated user account with credit card details could also be used.

Amnesia Connect has also been developed to work with the new Microsoft Surface 2.0 table, that was announced at the 2011 International Consumer Electronics Show.

Amnesia Razorfish Managing Director Michael Buckley said that Amnesia Connect is available immediately for the agency’s clients to utilise in projects and added existing clients that had seen the application were ‘very excited’.

Follow @amnesiafish on Twitter.
PS: Ask questions in the comments below – we will do our best to answer them!

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CES 2011 and here are my favourite things

January 7, 2011

As usual everybody seems to be waiting to announce their new products at CES and this year hasn’t been any different.

And again we are overwhelmed with information from everyone and blinded by all the new shiny products. I will have to get a 2nd job to be able to afford all the new gadgets I want now.

So below is a list of my favourites from the CES this year that I found on different blogs around the internets (maybe one day I will be able to go there in person)

So here I will be showing you tablets, 3D stuff, Microsoft hardware and some other cool stuff I came across

Read the rest of this entry »


Hacking the Xbox Kinect

November 29, 2010

I have to start this post with a whinge, I pre-ordered Xbox Kinect from JBHifi. When I pre-order something I do expect it to get to me on the day it gets released or at least the day after. We finally got our Kinect here at the office after it was already released for over a week. I could have just walked  down the street and picked on up.

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but that is not what I want to talk about here. It is all setup in our reception area and we already had a lot of people trying it out and loving it.

There are some very smart people out there and it only took 3 hours before the Kinect was hacked and an open source driver was created so you can use it on your PC, a little later on your Linux box and then on your Mac.

and what are people doing with it? They are creating some awesome things. Here is a small collection of the things I came across:

Best interactive Puppet

Have your own lightsaber

Capture yourself in 3D

same guy in 3D with a little awesome surprise at 0:53 – watch it it’s worth it

use Kinect to control Windows 7

there are heaps more videos after the break

Read the rest of this entry »


Microsoft’s answer to Google Street View

August 3, 2010

The issue: traversing a busy urban street in a 360-degree photographic bubble can be disorienting, especially when searching for a specific address or business

The solution: Microsoft Street Slide, developed by MS Research. Zoom out of your panoramic bubble and the street is presented as a dynamic, multi-perspective "strip" giving you an instant visual summary of the surroundings.

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Supposedly Microsoft is already working on taking Street Slide mobile with an iPhone port, and probably a version for the upcoming Windows Phone 7 series.

Unfortunately, don’t expect this to be released anytime soon as the team has only processed about 2400 panoramas so far covering just 4 kilometers of streets.

Watch the video and you will be impressed.

@maniac13


Sony vs Microsoft or Atrac vs Surface

May 4, 2010

Swiss company Atracsys sold its tech knowhow to Sony and the company is today informing the world that its atracTable is ready for mass production and commercialization this June.

The system is a dual camera-based system that tracks and analyzes body movements in three dimensions, in real-time. Initially designed for use with a computer in a sterile operating theater, the interface not only notices subtle changes in the position of your body, arm, hand, or finger position, but it’s also determine rough age, sex, or facial expression of the user.

of course nobody knows a price yet, but they promise a high-contrast, Full HD screen, which is already better than the surface table from MS.

It will be able to communicate with your mobile devices or respond to motion input, which is picked up by a pair of Sony camcorders.

Here is another video of it in action:

Read the rest of this entry »


Vote for us to win a People’s Choice Award

April 27, 2010

Amnesia Razorfish has been nominated for an ‘Interactive Advertising’ Webby for our Lonely Planet application on the Microsoft Surface… and we need your vote for a People’s Choice Award!

There is not long to go before the People’s Choice voting closes, so please go to the Mobile & Experience Marketing category and VOTE FOR US.

Note: You do have to sign up with a valid email address before voting. But I signed up awhile ago have not received any spam thus far, so it can be assumed your email address is safe.

Thanks for your vote 🙂


The Courier: Microsoft wants to send you something nice.

April 14, 2010

We haven’t blogged about this here yet, and given all the tablet-like devices we’ve covered over the last couple of weeks (iPad mania? Maybe.) why not add Microsoft’s possible entry into the fray.

The Courier appears to sit somewhere between a smartphone, PDA, the current imaginings of a tablet and… a book. It may sound odd, but if you can see the picture below, you’ll notice just how enticing this might be to certain creative folk, myself included.

Microsoft Courier

Courtesy of Engadget

Notice the menu on the left hand page, sketching. Sure, reading, playing, all of that is great – but for someone who loves to draw, and loves to draw on the go, this is some kind of dream come true. It hasn’t come true yet, but it looks to be on the way. This concept is intended for both touch and stylus, recognising (much like this) that touch is great for some things… but for others, it’s honestly best to have another tool in hand.

Not all fancy new devices have to come in iPad/Slate/Tablet form, and the idea of a digital note/sketchbook complete with camera and mobile web capabilities is a fantastic step into an innovative, digital future. Better yet, it should fit in your pocket.

@tali3sin


Microsofts new touchscreen mobiles are all about being social with your friends

April 13, 2010

Microsoft today launched its new series of touchscreen mobile smartphones called Kin.

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There is a 4GB and an 8GB version with 5 and 8 Megapixel cameras with flash, capable of HD video and both models focus heavily on all your social networks, e.g. Twitter and facebook.

It seems that these phones are targeted at 18 to 35 year olds.

check out the video here

 

not the phone I am going to go for, but impressive to see how MS is putting all its eggs into social networking.

@maniac13


See the future at Microsoft TechFest

March 3, 2010

Techcrunch was able to get a preview of the upcoming projects that MS will show off at the upcoming TechFest.

As usual not all of these will become an actual product but most of them are definitely interesting.

Here are the once I like:

Immersive Digital Painting

The translating telephone

Cloud Computing

there are a couple more here if you are interested

@maniac13


Augmented reality maps – TED2010 Talk – Blaise Aguera’s demo

February 16, 2010

Blaise Aguera, co-creator of Photosynth, demonstrates the latest Microsoft augmented reality mapping technology from MS Live Labs.

Great fodder for brainstorming ways emerging mapping (and image/data crowdsourcing) technology can be wrapped up in practical applications.

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That’s a live video feed layered over 3D map of an interior space.

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Layered images from multiple sources.

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Look up for time-based constellation mapping.

http://www.ted.com/talks/blaise_aguera.html

@iclazie


Windows mobile 7, sorry Windows Phone 7 series is here

February 16, 2010

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I have been waiting for a while now and I couldn’t wait this morning to get online and read all about it.

For the past hour I have been watching hands-on videos and I have mixed feelings about it.

First of all I have to say I am impressed with the initial look and feel. Compared to the older Winmos it looks heaps better, more cleaned up and more intuitive. Your homescreen is completely customizable, it has Xbox Live integration, you can finally natively get to your facebook and twitter and and and

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The picture gallery seems pretty slick as well with full multi-touch support. The browser seems to handle page layouts the way it should be and has multi-touch support.

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Oh and of course the music integration that is taken straight from the Zune HD. One big advantage here will be that Australia might get it finally and so will the rest of the world.

One thing I didn’t like is the big bold text everywhere that sometimes doesn’t even fit on the screen and gets cut off – the picture below should say “Anonymous Caller”

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Check out the hands-on from engadget here if you haven’t enough yet.

I personally can’t wait to get my hands on one of them.

@maniac13


Windows 7 and Twitter a/c for @MicrosoftHelps

October 23, 2009

A big couple of days for Microsoft as they launch Windows 7. Below are links to the launch in New York and link to the You Tube channel for Microsoft Australia ads where Amnesia Razorfish helped run the social efforts. Well done to the guys locally for a massive effort yesterday.  We love the new operating system and have glowing reviews from the staff on Windows 7 already.

New York

Australia TVC’s

@MicrosoftHelps twitter account Read the rest of this entry »


Microsofts answer to Nintendos Wii

June 2, 2009

is project Natal which they announced at their keynote speech at E3 this year.

It is using camera technology developed by 3DV and according to the promo video it will have some nice features, e.g. voice recognition, scanning features and of course full body motion control.

check out the video here:

Unfortunately it doesn’t look like we will be using it this year.