Tangible Interaction

20 Jun 2007 - 1:40pm
7 years ago
11 replies
383 reads
Jose Castro
2007

Hey guys,

I am Jose Castro and I work as a co-founder for Creosome (however we are
thinking about changing our name to Tangible Interaction). We create
products that are easily embedded in spaces and we create a unique
technology that creates multiple opportunities for people to interact with
smart objects.

I have been doing a lot of reading about Interaction Design, HCI, Tangible
Interaction, etc and I would like to know what you guys know about Tangible
Interaction and whether or not Tangible Interaction would be an ideal name
for my company moving forward =)

Hope to hear your comments about our product (Zygote - patent pending):
www.tangibleinteraction.com

Any help would be extremely appreciated.

Jose.

Comments

20 Jun 2007 - 2:26pm
White, Jeff
2007

Wow! That is one big cursor, man! I love how the mouse cursor on your
website is gigantic, but the actual targets are really small. Sorry - I
realize this isn't the feedback you're looking for, and also that it's
not relevant to the goal of your website. I'll stop now.

I don't know much about the realm of "tangible interaction". But, I do
think that seems like a very appropriate name for your organization and
the type of products you appear to be developing. It makes sense to me -
I can get a feel for what your company actually makes just from the
name, which is a quality not many brand names actually have.

As for your product, it seems really cool to me. I just got back from a
4 day music festival, and the crowd was going nuts with beach balls,
etc. Everyone would have loved to play around with your product. Will it
react to music being played as well, or just physical touch? Making it
react to music has some pretty cool implications when it comes to the
concept of the band and audience creating something together. Far out.
Groovy. :-)

Jeff

20 Jun 2007 - 4:16pm
lists
2006

Hi Jose,

Zygote looks very cool. I think this is one of those things, like
many tangible interfaces, where it will be difficult to imagine what
the usage experience is really like without actually using it first.
So I can't provide more useful comments. But I was at the Coachella
music festival earlier this year and physical, interactive art always
draws a crowd at these things.

As for your name change, Tangible Interactions sounds appropriate.
But it depends on who you think your audience will be. I actually
like the sound of the name Creosome (having no idea what it's
supposed to mean) and think it would be appealing to an art-centric
crowd. Tangible Interactions is easier to understand, but it's not a
fun, whimsical name. So depends on who you're trying to serve.

CCRMA (Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics) at
Stanford has a course on tangible interfaces within the context of
music. They've had some really interesting projects over the years.
Bill Verplank, the primary instructor, has a page (http://
ccrma.stanford.edu/%7Everplank/) with links to videos of numerous
projects from past years. Use the links next to the label "The
Controllers Course". You might be interested in watching these to see
what types of physical interactions students have come up with
relating to music.

Another group doing interesting work with tangible interfaces and
media is the Tangible Media Group at MIT. Their website is (http://
tangible.media.mit.edu/) and there's a link there for their projects.

And as Jeff commented earlier, that's a big cursor!

Best,
-Lonny

-------------------------------
-------------------------------
Lonny L. Chu, Ph.D.
Principal

Furiant Consulting
lonny at furiant.com
www.furiant.com
(650) 248-3910
-------------------------------
-------------------------------

On Jun 20, 2007, at 11:40 AM, Jose Castro wrote:

> Hey guys,
>
> I am Jose Castro and I work as a co-founder for Creosome (however
> we are
> thinking about changing our name to Tangible Interaction). We create
> products that are easily embedded in spaces and we create a unique
> technology that creates multiple opportunities for people to
> interact with
> smart objects.
>
> I have been doing a lot of reading about Interaction Design, HCI,
> Tangible
> Interaction, etc and I would like to know what you guys know about
> Tangible
> Interaction and whether or not Tangible Interaction would be an
> ideal name
> for my company moving forward =)
>
> Hope to hear your comments about our product (Zygote - patent
> pending):
> www.tangibleinteraction.com
>
> Any help would be extremely appreciated.
>
> Jose.
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
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21 Jun 2007 - 12:15am
Trip O'Dell
2007

Hi Jose - Zygote is an interesting concept. I see a lot of
applications there.

I'm currently the creative director for a company that works in a
similar space. We don't do concerts, but we use game and sensor
technologies to make physical spaces interactive. I find it difficult
to explain to people what we do, (I'm sure that more than a few of us
have that problem). I typically tell people I make video games for
museums, which really doesn't clarify things, but it sounds cool :-)

In my experience, using buzz words like tangible, design and
interaction don't really clarify what you can do for clients because
your average joe doesn't understand how those ideas might be related.

My company, (Nogginaut) is currently in the middle of re-branding and
tuning our message to better reflect what we do in terms our clients
may find approachable. We're trying very hard to be clear in an
effort to help potential clients understand our value.

This is the description we've been using (this is of course all
copyrighted material):

"Nogginaut designs and builds playful, technology-enhanced
experiences for physical spaces. We create hands-on interactions
with information which translate into powerful experiences for
brands, ideas and concepts. Our approach is a distinctive mix of
cutting-edge know how, user-focused pragmatism and creative derring-
do. Our work includes traveling exhibits for major consumer brands,
public play installations for elite cultural institutions, experience
design for corporate and retail spaces and creative consulting for a
diverse range of industries. "

Your product relates to play. I would focus on that.

"Play" is not threatening to most people. Its familiar, they
understand how play works, what play is. "Interaction" is "computer
stuff" for many folks - systems which are threatening, unknowable and
fragile. What you are trying to create with Zygote is a shared state
of flow - where users loose themselves in the moment and social
barriers that might normally exist fall away in a shared experience.
Its similar to the way children behave within the context of a
playground. In the playground rules and expectations are different .

Ultimately, it really doesn't matter. This stuff has to be seen and
experienced to be understood. I would really encourage you to get
some video of zygote in action before to long. You can explain the
idea until you're blue in the face, but seeing is believing with this
stuff.

Send some links when you get some video up. I'm sure I'm not the only
one who would love to see it.

Good luck!

Trip O'Dell
Interaction Designer
www.tripodell.com
------------------------------
"Specialization is for insects..."
-Robert A. Heinlein

On Jun 20, 2007, at 1:40 PM, Jose Castro wrote:

> Hey guys,
>
> I am Jose Castro and I work as a co-founder for Creosome (however
> we are
> thinking about changing our name to Tangible Interaction). We create
> products that are easily embedded in spaces and we create a unique
> technology that creates multiple opportunities for people to
> interact with
> smart objects.
>
> I have been doing a lot of reading about Interaction Design, HCI,
> Tangible
> Interaction, etc and I would like to know what you guys know about
> Tangible
> Interaction and whether or not Tangible Interaction would be an
> ideal name
> for my company moving forward =)
>
> Hope to hear your comments about our product (Zygote - patent
> pending):
> www.tangibleinteraction.com
>
> Any help would be extremely appreciated.
>
> Jose.

12 Oct 2007 - 5:51am
Anonymous

Hi all,I am new to this list and this is my first post in the list.I am interested in tangible interaction and i would like to know how many companies and institution are focusing on tangible interactions.David

12 Oct 2007 - 8:19am
JHOEKEMA at hvc...
2007

47

----- Original Message -----
From: david <david.brooks at rediffmail.com>
Date: Friday, October 12, 2007 7:02 am
Subject: [IxDA Discuss] tangible interaction
To: discuss1 <discuss at ixda.org>

> Hi all,I am new to this list and this is my first post in the
> list.I am interested in tangible interaction and i would like to
> know how many companies and institution are focusing on tangible
> interactions.David

12 Oct 2007 - 8:39am
White, Jeff
2007

Ha! Actually, it's 42. It's always 42. David - sometimes we're kinda
sarcastic around here. But welcome to the list.

Here's one off the top of my head (this was posted on the list earlier this
year): www.tangibleinteraction.com

Related threads in the archive: http://beta.ixda.org/search.php?tag=tangible

On 10/12/07, JHOEKEMA at hvc.rr.com <JHOEKEMA at hvc.rr.com> wrote:
>
> 47
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: david <david.brooks at rediffmail.com>
> Date: Friday, October 12, 2007 7:02 am
> Subject: [IxDA Discuss] tangible interaction
> To: discuss1 <discuss at ixda.org>
>
> > Hi all,I am new to this list and this is my first post in the
> > list.I am interested in tangible interaction and i would like to
> > know how many companies and institution are focusing on tangible
> > interactions.David
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://gamma.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://gamma.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://gamma.ixda.org/help
>

12 Oct 2007 - 9:53am
SemanticWill
2007

No doubt 42 is write.

will evans
user experience architect
wkevans4 at gmail.com
617.281.1281

On Oct 12, 2007, at 9:39 AM, "Jeff White" <jwhite31 at gmail.com> wrote:

> Ha! Actually, it's 42. It's always 42. David - sometimes we're kinda
> sarcastic around here. But welcome to the list.
>
> Here's one off the top of my head (this was posted on the list
> earlier this
> year): www.tangibleinteraction.com
>
> Related threads in the archive: http://beta.ixda.org/search.php?tag=tangible
>
> On 10/12/07, JHOEKEMA at hvc.rr.com <JHOEKEMA at hvc.rr.com> wrote:
>>
>> 47
>>
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: david <david.brooks at rediffmail.com>
>> Date: Friday, October 12, 2007 7:02 am
>> Subject: [IxDA Discuss] tangible interaction
>> To: discuss1 <discuss at ixda.org>
>>
>>> Hi all,I am new to this list and this is my first post in the
>>> list.I am interested in tangible interaction and i would like to
>>> know how many companies and institution are focusing on tangible
>>> interactions.David
>>
>> ________________________________________________________________
>> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
>> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
>> Unsubscribe ................ http://gamma.ixda.org/unsubscribe
>> List Guidelines ............ http://gamma.ixda.org/guidelines
>> List Help .................. http://gamma.ixda.org/help
>>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://gamma.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://gamma.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://gamma.ixda.org/help

12 Oct 2007 - 10:12am
Anonymous

It will be great for me if someone can mention some company names which will give me more idea of the companies working on this field. like Jeff wrote about tangibleinteraction.com. I am computer engineer, tangible interaction is very interesting domain and I would like to know more details of this field. david.

12 Oct 2007 - 11:16am
Wesley Hall
2007

Hi David,

You might start by thinking about what kind of things you want to make, and
then start researching the companies who make them. You'll find out pretty
quickly whether it's a large or small market.

"Tangible interaction" is (IMHO) the intersection between industrial design,
interaction design and environmental design. You usually find it in museum
exhibits/exhibit design, toys, and the kind of art you find at Burning Man
and music festivals.

Ideo, frog design and other large design consultancies play in this area,
too. Such as when ideo redesigned the patient intake process for the Mayo
clinic --- that project touched interaction/environmental design in a pretty
cool way.

I don't know this for sure, but my guess is that you'll find that the
companies that can afford to hire folks in all the different disciplines are
either large consultancies, or else small, punkrock design shops that are
pursuing a funky product or two.

-wesley

13 Oct 2007 - 11:50am
Dan Saffer
2003

When you find interesting companies working in this space (or
products) and they are working with touchscreen or interactive
surfaces, please add them to the Interactive Gestures wiki!

<http://www.interactivegestures.com>

I started a list, but it is very incomplete.

Dan

13 Oct 2007 - 1:58pm
Jeff Howard
2004

Hi David,

In terms of institutions, The Tangible Media group led by Hiroshi
Ishii of the MIT Media Lab is probably at the top of the list. Their
work in tangible computing has a long history.

http://tangible.media.mit.edu/

For plenty of examples (including MetaDESK and phicons from MIT), two
of the best books to read are:

Where the Action Is: The Foundation of Embodied Interaction
by Paul Dourish

Everyware: The Dawning Age of Ubiquitous Computing
by Adam Greenfield

Tangible interaction is still a niche and not many consultancies are
focusing on it exclusively but a couple worth checking out include:

ThingM
http://thingm.com/

Schulze and Webb
http://schulzeandwebb.com/

See also:
http://nearfield.org/

Two companies that are providing frameworks for experimentation in
tangible interaction (via physical computing) are:

Tinker.it
http://tinker.it/

Phidgets Inc.
http://www.phidgets.com/

Finally, check out the presentations from Sketching in Hardware 2007.
It's a who's who of the people working on the front lines. Camille
Moussette's presentation on haptic interaction is especially good.

http://www.sketching07.com/participants.html

// jeff

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