Do you know the story behind this Californian sea?
I recently saw a 25-minutes documentary featuring Patricia Kopatchinskaja about the life of a violist. It suffices to say that her passionate way of perceiving music and her connection to it got to me.
How many neurons does a human brain have? Are larger brains smarter brains? Do larger brains have more neurons in them? Does the size of a brain increase with the size of the animal? How much energy does a brain consume, and why is this important? Are there limits to how many neurons a brain can contain?
These and many other questions are tackled in this particularly informative TED talk. Take a look:
What do you do when you have an idea? How do you think about it? If you’re like me or like most people, you probably imagine this idea in terms of visual images. Irrespective of what the idea is, be it an object, a plan for doing something, or an abstract concept, the first tendency is to try and view it in some way. You are basically doing a “rapid mental prototype” of your idea or concept.
Now imagine how could it would be if you wouldn’t need to learn to draw in order to get these images out of your head in an almost 1-to-1 mapping. Yes, these days are not far away and brain scanning makes it all possible. Just take a look:
If we will be able to extract the images and the sketches from our heads, simply by imagining them, what would this mean? The potential implications are endless: drawing by thought, getting ideas quickly to paper, recording dreams, and many more.
So what would you do if you could get your mental images on paper?
What makes interaction intuitive? And why are IT systems so dependent on the one screen paradigm?
The Siftables tangible user interface shows us that there are alternatives. Do you see such interaction being used in a wide range of applications? Or are such specific approaches damned to serve their purpose as pure toys and learning aids?
In case you haven’t heard, in the last week or so, TED invited Edward Snowden to give a talk at TED 2014. At the same time, they have given the NSA the opportunity to react to any of the information provided by Snowden. The final results are two talks, showing the two sides of the story:
Which side are you on?
Coach John Wooden describes in this TED Talk, in very clear and beautiful words, what it means to be successful. He argues, like I have been doing some time now, that success is not related to wealth or power, but rather “peace of mind attained only through self-satisfaction in knowing you made the effort of doing the best of which you’re capable” (John Wooden).
I strongly believe that in the end, the only person in front of whom you have to define and justify your level of success is yourself. If you manage to live up to your expectations of yourself, the ones that you know that you’re capable of achieving, even if these achievements might be insignificant to others, then you are successful. You, as a person, should know best who you are and what your goal is in life. Once you do, you have a duty to yourself to follow this through. And while some roads can be to far to go, the fact that you stick to it means that you are persevering in becoming the best you. And isn’t that the most you can hope for?
Being entirely dedicated to doing your best and being the best “you” possible is already 99% of the battle won.
For decades we have used keyboards to communicate and express ourselves in the digital world. Relatively recently, the focus of user input has shifted towards multi-touch interaction, at least for a select group of devices and tasks. Now it seems that handwriting is about to get a boost in the virtual space.
Wacom is releasing a cross-platform standard for sharing handwritten notes and drawings. This is even more impressive when we consider that users will be able to experience and interact with how their collaborators are sketching something or writing a note. Imagine sitting in your hotel room with your tablet in your hand, while watching in real-time how your child creates a drawing on his device at home. Technology is getting increasingly focused on the human factor, and I believe this is the exact way to follow.
Lovely songs for a winter evening.