It’s a cross platform, open-source project, very similar to Processing or OpenFrameworks, but with better memory management and OpenGL support. Features include standalone applications and screensaver creation, Cocoa touch support (iPhone, iPad), OpenGL texture classes, webcam capture support and full Quicktime support. Besides the tech specs, what can it really do? The most famous example is probably the Augmented Reality cover on Esquire but there’s lot of video goodness by Robert Hodgin (aka flight404) below.
One of the last chapters of 37 Signal‘s book Rework is titled “Inspiration is Perishable”. Not only this matters here but it has long been how i feel about sharing ideas. Or quoting my current Twitter background:
With that in mind, and considering i had my share of great ideas ignored only to see them later featured on The FWA, each month i’ll share 3 new ideas that you’re free to use and improve. They’re mostly rough thoughts (probably a few of them already exist), but in the right hands or brand could be more useful than on a used notepad.
An App for a railway company,Â using Facebook’s Graph API that when booking a ticket allows you to see who’s siting next to you, or allows you to follow them on Twitter. A conversation break, from online to offline.
News of My World
With Google making available old covers of the newspaper News Of The World, how cool would it be to have a News Of The World Cover Generator. An alien invasion of your coworkers, the kid next door with three hands or your best friend on a freak show.
A site with webcam tracking, that while listening to a music track detects your head banging and generates different visualizations, adjusting the bass/treble accordingly.
Because it’s all about the execution.
I’ll be giving the talk above, on how the new web has changed the event industry and how to use the new platforms and services.
We’re almost there: the 2010 Do It Yourself SHiFT conference is starting this week. The next 16th and 17h at Teatro Aberto, Lisbon,Â we meet again to discuss and share Social and Human Ideas For Technology, after the 2 previous successful editions.
Tinkerers, thinkers, hackers, technologists or curious people by nature can find something of their interest on the several talks and workshops. Here’s a preview:
- 5 PARA A MEIA-NOITE, RTP2: how the first cross-platform show in Portugal made us re-think it all Bruno Lima Santos
- about starting a coworking space Christoph Fahle
- Branding Today Andrea Vascellari
- Deconstructing DIY Elmine Wijnia
- Grappling the “Zhou Dynasty” in emerging markets Kushtrim Xhakli
- Guerilla Tactics for Developers Wolfgang Wopperer
- Hack Your Way to Being a Recognized Expert Morgan Brown
- Open Source Hardware – Of Makers and Tinkerers Jan Krutisch
- SHiFT to Sustainable Prosperity Ken Nunes
- Stop thinking, its bad for ya. Fred Oliveira
- The birth of a company-wide wiki Joaquim Baptista
- Work like the Network: Six ways organizations are fundamentally reorganizing since the advent of the Internet Lane Becker
The 2 day event is more than a tech conference: it’s about how technology can be used to be achieve a positive change in society. The casual setting is a great chance to meet other people and learn about new things. Better yet, not only learn, but Do It Yourself.
Disclaimer: i’m aÂ symbolic last minute helper of the fantastic team organizing the event.
It felt quite appropriate for this season a post that has been in draft for a few months, after collecting several examples of one feature that is rarely highlighted on interactive design. Let’s find some virtual Easter eggs!
Easter eggs (as in virtual, not the seasonal ones), are secret messages left hidden on objects/websites to be found by users. The first historical appearance of a virtual Easter egg was on Atari’s Adventure in 1979, later popularized by the NES series Contra with their Konami code.
Lately there has been a renewed interest on providing such hidden treats, either connected to Alternate Reality Gaming or as a simple way to surprise passionate users on web applications.
Ninja Mode for Google Reader
UP, UP, DOWN, DOWN, LEFT RIGHT,LEFT, RIGHT, B,A = Ninjas appear on the left sidebar + 30 unread items + heart power 🙂
Extra Lives for the Globe
You can find lots of other examples at Konamicodesites.com (to enter, use the konami code) or on Wikipedia, with other large scale websites using the famous keyboard combo :
- Shaun Inman’s Mint web analytics software, revealing a way to control Stan (aka Jason Santa Maria) singing a metal song in Middle Earth.
- Social Network Netlog gives us a hungry green dragon.
- The geek webcomic XKCD couldn’t help to also feature a Konami code, right on their unix version.
“I’m feeling Lucky”
Just type the words and press “I’m Feeling Lucky Button”
- Hacker-speak: “google l33t”
- Klinkgon: “xx-klingon”
- Pirate: “xx-pirate”
- Pig-Latin: “xx-piglatin”
Similar to Google’s “I’m feeling lucky” is the idea of showing special search results to particular keywords. If you search for a one-way flight on September 22, 2010 on Kayak, it will “show” the tickets for the Sydney-LAX Oceanic 815 flight, the one from TV series Lost. And you can even try to book it. (via Adverlab) Referencing popular culture on a discrete but ingenious way might just be the modern form of easter egg.
Also on Facebook
I was quite surprised to find out that Facebook actually enjoys this kind of surprises.
Besides the Konami code (showing a flare), Facebook programmers are known to place messages hidden messges. After selecting all text on a friend Friend’s list, at the bottom there’s the message: “What doesn’t kill a quail tour turkey only makes it stronger”. Or in the same page, try selecting one of the “—” on the dropdown box to get a grid view of all friends. Another easter egg is on Facebook Chat, were writing :putnam: gets you an emoticon of a manï¿½s head.
Source Code Delights
One of the best examples of easter eggs i found was this one used on the FujiFilm binoculars, where what seemed just like an ordinary, web design non-standart HTML code was actually the silhouette of Mount Fuji, a clever way to pay homage to a country but also highlight the main feature of their products.
Website Scavenger Hunts
A bit more complex than the simple easter egg, they are used to someÂ mail markets extent on marketing, but it’s hard to ensure success unless you have the kind of passionate users like Moo.com,that launched in 2008 a multi-site easter egg hunt across several websites.
One of the best examples of this playful interaction is Disney, and their self-referencing of characters and objects, on a such discrete way that we don’t even notice, but when finding out, we just love it. Copyright 2003 Disney / Pixar. All Rights Reserved The comic book being read at the Incredibles is the then upcoming Finding Nemo
Easter eggs give connectors a social object, a exciting story to spread among their network and make a brand webmaster team more human and more memorable. Building curiosity in brand experiences is not only fun but a response to our human nature: we are discoverers.