Information, the new material


5 Responses to “Information, the new material”

  1. JayeRandom says:

    How does your vision of ubicomp match, and how does it differ from, Bruce Sterling’s notions of an infrastructure for (his term) “spimes”?

    • mikekuniavsky says:

      I agree with Bruce (most of the time ;-), and cite him a fair bit in the book. I think that where we differ, if we differ at all, is that I believe that ubiquitous computing will come primarily in the form of familiar objects that are increasingly augmented with information processing until they become dependent on information processing to do their jobs (this, for example, is what’s happened with cars), rather than new classes of objects that are wholly unfamiliar. That’s why I don’t describe things as spimes all that often. Many everyday digital products today are spimes, but their users call them by other names–”running shoe”, “camera”, “toy”, etc. I wanted to focus in the book on the challenge of designing one of these things, so I didn’t discuss them as a class quite as much as Bruce (or Adam Greenfield in “Everyware”) has.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Once upon a time, there were nerds into “wearable computing” — some of the most outré, like Steve Mann, strapped 15-pound video cameras to their heads.

    Sometime in the last decade these people shrugged and said, “Buy a cell phone.” This is a good thing.

    Now we have Camera Barbie, who lacks only facebook integration, and that only because of concerns about the target market.

    We will always need the cellphone type device — communication is fundamental to human nature, and a small device that can facilitate all forms is best: audio, video, text, push or pull, confidential or broadcast.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Nice supplement to the QR post :) I think they complement each other quite nicely :)

  4. Ernunnos says:

    Yeah, because I’m going to be happier if my easy chair, my end table, and the beer bottle I’m drinking from are all networked.

    Look, computing is fun, but it has its place. The reason cell phones are popular computing devices is the same reason transistor radios were popular. Take anything that provides some utility and make it smaller and more portable, and people will love you for it. But the whole point is that you can take one little radio with you everywhere, and it’s no longer necessary to build radios into things. Everything else can be just… what it is.

    The smaller and more efficient computers get, the less ubiquitous they need to be.

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