In the Details: Title Truncation
I received an announcement from Apple that Star Wars novels are now available in the iBook Store, so I checked it out. I immediately noticed, however, that the displayed titles were not particularly helpful. All Star Wars novels are titled first with “Star Wars”, then with the name of the series (e.g. Fate of the Jedi), and finally, the title of the specific novel. That makes for rather long...
Interaction 12 Call for Presenters
It doesn’t seem all that long ago that I was making arrangements for hotels and exhibitors for Interaction 11, but here it is the end of June, and the call for presenters for Interaction 12 just went out yesterday. I’m really intrigued to see the schedule they are working up, as they are accepting both 45-minute and 10-minute session proposals. The 10-minute sessions could give a lot more of us...
Let’s see some I.D.
I.D. was America’s premier magazine about contemporary product design and material culture from 1954 through 2009. To be honest, I didn’t realize the magazine had closed shop, but this is the introduction to the new I.D… not-a-magazine. Yes, the URL is www.id-mag.com, and the page title is “ID Magazine Served”, but there is no magazine here, or at least, not what I consider to be one. It’s a...
Once Upon a Time…
There’s a great discussion happening right now on the IxDA forums about the technical skills of interaction designers. Should we learn how to code? To what extent? What are the possible benefits and risks of doing so? I’d like to tell you a little story. Once upon a time, I didn’t know much code. I had learned Lingo, the scripting language for what was then Macromedia Director (now Adobe’s), so...
Disney World – There’s an app for that.
I was in the Disney theme parks for eight days over my vacation, and Undercover Tourist helped me make the most of them. The iPhone app provides the following information for all four parks: Park hours, including Extra Magic Hours Name and description of each ride organized by park area Color-coded wait times for every ride, or other status, such as that the ride is closed Whether or not a...
Interactive Animated Improv
There were two shows we saw at Disney World that especially impressed me, both using the same technology. Turtle Talk with Crush featured the righteous sea turtle from Finding Nemo. He was part of a projected, 3-D animation, but it was live. Crush interacted with the audience, answering questions and reacting in real time. It was a seamless experience—people interacting with a cartoon character as...
Hope for 3-D
I’ve been rather disdainful of the current 3-D movie fad. I found in Orlando that it is saturating the amusement parks as well. I remember watching Captain EO back when my parents took me to Disney World for the first time, and I thought it was cool—that was the first 3-D movie I had seen. All of the 3-D movies in theme parks are full of gimmickry. “Hey, look at me, I’m in 3-D!” They take it even...
Don’t Waste It!
Epcot has always been my favorite of the Disney parks. It is educational, as well as entertaining. It’s rides teach us about the future by looking at the past. The Innoventions East and West buildings contain temporary exhibits as you might find in science centers. I was particularly impressed by the Don’t Waste It! exhibit, sponsored by Waste Management, which closed a few days after we saw it....
My family was trying to leave a Hilton hotel. It took several seconds longer than usual to find the call button for the elevator.
The Disney parks are employing simple game mechanics to provide additional entertainment for the kiddies. At Animal Kingdom, each region of the park had a Kids Discovery Center, a station at which kids could participate in some type of educational activity. Upon completion of the activity, they would receive a stamp on their card. When all of the stamps have been collected, a cast member has the...
We don’t serve their kind here!
No smoking. No eating or drinking. No robots? All of the Disney busses have this sticker posted in the front and back. I never did figure out what the last icon is supposed to represent. Suggestions?
I always carry my camera with me when I’m on a trip, especially family vacations, and may carry more than one. This was always a bother when visiting amusement parks. Sometimes they don’t allow “loose” items on the ride, with good reason. Water rides have the potential of dousing your carry-ons. I was in the habit of putting my wallet in a Ziploc bag to keep it dry. On my recent visit to Disney...