tags: hci

“A cork fits nicely into the hole where the radio’s speaker sits beneath. By pushing the cork into this hole, the radio turns off and by removing it, the radio turns itself on again.”

“We are radiotropes. Just as other lifeforms orientate themselves in response to the sun’s radiation, many contemporary human behaviours are shaped by electromagnetic landscapes and signal topographies.


Open Flame is a router paired with a candle. To bring up this network the candle must be lit and when it is blown out, the network disappears.


These devices are examples of eccentric engineering. Eccentric engineering asks questions of how we design the everyday technologies that sustain us. It is a provocation for thinking about infrastructures as negotiations with non-human organisms and systems, rather than as exclusively human services.”

“[E]xpanding on the ideas of the current system of a true free-hand library: The shelf-scanning robot allows you to reorganise the books without losing their positions; the original table lets you pin down a collection of books and materials as a collection, and save it as a reading list for others to find.”

“Focus effects are the crux of what makes tvOS communal. Focus effects provide visual feedback not only to whomever is quarterbacking the remote, but also to any onlookers who are following along. They’re what separate this native TV experience from AirPlay-ing your iPad to the big screen.”

“a proposal and proof-of-concept for an interactive book about programming the graphics processor”

I especially enjoyed the little “Make this” games in the Sample Chapter.

“a Dynamic Shape Display that can render 3D content physically”

“It works like this: when a window gets dragged offscreen, the controls on the toolbar will shift to fill any remaining space in order to stay visible. This means that important controls like the window close button will remain accessible at all times.”

“Here […] lies the answer to how to tell whether some developer […] is serious about their craft in five seconds flat: borrow their device, and triple-click the home button.”

Minimal todo list iPhone app “almost entirely controlled by gestures”. I use it every day. UI takes a few minutes to get used to, but after that it doesn’t get in the way much… Learning which swipe means “check” and which means “delete” took me about three days, though.

“I now have a dozen little scripts that do nifty things with mail. […] And every time I write one, I feel like a genius. The whole system just delights me. I want everything in my life to work like this program.”

About CLI:

The power of this representation, though, goes much further. More difficult things can build upon the general pattern that evolves from the syntax:

create playlist “country plus katy” from last 11

Harder, but are we really ramping up the difficulty considerably over what we can achieve with a GUI? The GUI version of that last command isn’t hard, but it’s… fussier. It no longer “just works.”

“Always consider the implicit capabilities of the unimpaired user, and take steps to even the playing field. That’s what accessibility means. Not special treatment, but tailored access to the same treatment.”

“I anticipated a weird and slightly arduous journey, especially when it came to using the keyboard. To my great surprise, I picked it up immediately. Within 30 seconds, I checked the weather. Next, I read some stock prices. Amazingly, it even renders stock charts, something the blind have never had access to.”

“If I have to write one more polyglot bash / awk / python script to gather data from log files on a bunch of different machines, demux that into a time-ordered event stream, pipe it through something to munge it into some slightly different format, ship that off via post to some web address and get some JSON back, parse that into some other shit, do some computation over it like aggregation or date math over time stamps with unlike representations, wrap the results up in an HTML table and send that table in a MIME-enabled e-mail to myself I think I am going to explode.

Conceptual video about the experience of reading magazines on handheld digital devices.

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Maciej Konieczny

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