I blogged a few weeks back about some interesting interaction ideas involving touch screens – in particular, the screen from Perspective Pixel. Turns out, we have video of Tom Wujec using the screen with software out of Autodesk’s Alias portfolio. (In case you didn’t realize, Autodesk acquired Alias a bit more than a year ago - not the ISOGEN Alias, the 3D graphics Alias).
We are getting one of those Perspective Pixel touch walls in the office here. I imagine there will be quite a line when it shows up. The title of this post includes "convergence" because it turns out that as I'm thinking about these innovations in design, Autodesk is too. In fact, we have a blog - It's Alive in the Lab - devoted to these fresh ideas.
But here’s my problem with the all the cool designs around touch screens. Hardly anyone has a touch screen. Of course you can get them, but are they are far from ubiquitous. So I thought I’d mention a couple of other input methods that are also intriguing.
First, web cam as motion detector – in some ways a similar interaction to a touch screen, although you don’t actually get fingerprints on anything. There are a number of variations on this idea. You, of course, need a webcam to get these working.
And how many of you have wondered if the nintendo Wii could be ever be integrated with AutoCAD? Ok, so we got a little punchy at the bug-scrub meetings this week, and our Software development manager, Max, has a Wii (or so he says). But we all thought it would be a great way to draft - especially in 3D!
Every time I think about it, the idea of getting beyond the mouse/keyboard input seems like such an obvious evolution of technology. But even in keyboards, they don’t need to be so desktop intensive. This laser keyboard has been out for a while – it comes complete with simulated key click sounds. Extremely mobile, small enough to fit in all sorts of spaces, not sure how well it works in practice. But the idea is wonderful. People are already requesting extensions of this idea - things like a laser projected synthesizer keyboard.
We just had a divisional meeting, where it was mentioned that things that appeared to be toys in
yesteryear are embraced in business today - the desktop PC; Windows operating system; 3D modeling. . . . makes one give the toys another look.