G-Speak – Back to VR Gloves Again?


g-speak overview from john underkoffler on Vimeo.

It’s the gloves again.

Part of me wants to believe G-Speak is really is a fantastic “spatial operating environment”. The mouse and keyboard are awkward, clunky and out-dated with plenty of problems and it’s time for a change. G-Speak is about freeing ourselves from those shackles, about working in space across multiple screens.

I wanted to scream when I saw the tired reference to Minority Report, but it turns out that one of the team, John Underkoffler, was the science advisor on Minority Report, so they can get away with it given they he ripped off his own ideas for the film.

The video and some of the interaction looks great.

Except for the gloves.

It’s the gloves (and the headset) that made VR so lame. That and being tethered to a machine, so at least that part is no more.

Yet regardless of how much of a paradigm-shifting breakthrough g-speak is, I can’t see people donning the dorky gloves every time they want to work. I can’t see many people devoting that much space to one person’s screens either and I can’t see many people having the stamina to stand with their arms out-streched and wave them about all day. A two-hour yoga class is hard enough.

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Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to have a go and experience it for myself. I’m sure there is a whole of interesting interaction going on there.

I really want to be wrong about this. I really want to know that it’s not just a technical triumph from a group of talented tech guys whose blog has the most heinous URLs. I really do.

I just don’t want to have to smell the gloves.

(Via Bren).

Sprint’s Now Machine Data Overload

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In keeping with the seemingly American obsession that more data one has the better (especially on TV), Sprint have launched a viral campaign called the Now Machine Widget.

Kottke says, “I don’t know what this is or how it works or why Sprint is involved, but man is it fun to just let the data just wash over you.” It’s kind of fascinating, but also a totally overblown data overload and the kind of thing that would be unusable in any practical sense. (I often wonder how traders manage to spread their attention across so many screens. My guess is it is an illusion and that they can’t – it just stops them having to bring different windows to the front.)

The design of the Now Machine was by Mike Kellogg for Goodby, Sliverstein & Partners.

(Via Kottke via Airbag).

LinkedIn’s Weird UI Shadows

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Is it just me or does anyone else find LinkedIn’s new design tweaks weird on the perspective front?

This rounded-corner box has a couple of random shadows at the bottom. The impression is that the bottom corners are lifting up, but the box remains square and the top has no shadows. Logically, that can only mean that the background curves away from the box, except it has no gradient or shadows either.

It really niggles me for some reason and does my eyes in like some crazy M. C. Escher picture. Or am I being too anal?