Rafael Lozano-Hemmer’s latest installation design, Open Air, debuted over the Benjamin Franklin Parkway yesterday, September 20th. The project turns user-submitted audio messages into a spectacular visual which can be seen for miles. Powerful spotlights, cloud-computing, iOS applications, and GPS coordination work in real-time to hone in on individuals (within range of the Open Air public WiFi network) and broadcast their message across the night sky.
To participate, users can download an iOS app onto their iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch and – while on the parkway – record their message for the installation to analyze and play. Those out of range can experience Open Air on the web, as their messages can be submitted, reviewed, rendered, and transmitted using Adobe Flash, openGL, and Google Earth’s API.
Open Air is commissioned by the Association for Public Art. The project is funded in part by the inaugural round of the Philadelphia Knight Arts Challenge and presented in conjunction with the 2012 Philadelphia Live Arts Festival and the 2012 DesignPhiladelphia Festival.
The installation will have its closing ceremony during the DesignPhiladelphia Festival, October 14th.
[Open Air Philly]
Minecraft presents an interesting solution to United Nations’ urban planning goals.
Game developer Mojang, the folks responsible for the groundbreaking indie game Minecraft, have teamed up with UN-Habitat for a new project, Block by Block. Essentially, areas tagged for development by UN-Habitat will be reproduced within Minecraft and hosted on a multiplayer server so that citizens can visit, explore, and develop the area virtually.
Block by Block, based on a previous Minecraft-incorporating idea, aims to allow citizens in developing areas “to visualize urban planning ideas without necessarily having architectural training.” In collaboration with UN-Habitat, Mojang will use their video game to, “involve youth in the planning process in urban areas by giving them the opportunity to show planners and decision makers how they would like to see their cities in the future.”
Kibera in Nairobi, Kenya, is the pilot project. The three-year partnership will support UN-Habitat’s Sustainable Urban Development Network to upgrade 300 public spaces by 2016.
AIGA Philadelphia presents Pencil 2 Pixel crash course with Happy Cog. Philadelphia University is hosting the event on November 10, 2011 at 7pm in the Tuttleman Auditorium. The event will focus on how to design for various CMS’s. The lecture will be presented by Happy Cog designers, Yesenia Perez-Cruz and Michael Johnson, and Happy Cog developer, Allison Wagner. Together, they’ll break down what Content Management Systems are, and share their process for for designing work that is tailored for CMS’s. They’ll also discuss how they work together, design within constraints, and how much code you need to know.
Happy Cog is a website design company that prides itself on creating beautiful, innovate websites. From site structure to interface design, from branding to content development, Happy Cog’s people focus is on creating a layout that matches the customer’s needs. The company has locations in New York, Philadelphia, and San Fransisco. Happy Cog has designed websites for many well known clients such as MTV, Zappos, Visit Philly, The Today Show, AIGA, and many others.
Perfect Prototype is a Philadelphia-based interactive exhibit design studio. They specialize in turning ‘what ifs’ into interactive experiences where people are the interface. The company strives to produce meaningful, memorable, and measurable results. Recently, CEO Matt Browning of Perfect Protype gave a presentation about Augmented Reality technology. He showed the audience of Animators, Graphic, Industrial, and Interactive Designers popular instances of Augmented Reality technology (think the first – down line in a televised football game). He then went on to show the enthusiastic students some of his recent projects, including an interactive heart and an interactive brain, both for science museums.
Lindsay Butler, a graduate of Philadelphia University, currently works for Perfect Prototype. She has produced motion graphics and 3D animation for such diverse clients as Universal Display Corporation and the American Anti – Vivisection Society. As an Interactive Design and Media student, her studies in drawing, photography, and illustration give her an unusual and integrated perspective on client projects.
Today we not only say goodbye to a visionary and creative genius, but a pioneer and icon who changed how we view and consume content in the digital age.
For those of us in the field of Interactive Design & Media, Steve helped give us the tools we use today to communicate, create, and inspire. He was not only a CEO, but a true inventor. Those at Apple and around the world are mourning his death. Apple has set up an email account, firstname.lastname@example.org, for people to share their thoughts, memories, and condolences.
The year after Jobs cancer diagnosis, Jobs gave the commencement address to the 2005 graduating class of Stanford University. In his speech, he mentioned his acceptance of life and death and the circle of life.
“No one wants to die,” he said. “Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.”
So today, in honor of Steve Jobs we celebrate a man’s great accomplishments, we mourn the death of a inventor who changed the face of technology and we remember the person who’s lessons taught us to take opportunities in life’s setbacks
"When someone is seeking, it happens quite easily that he sees only the thing that he is seeking; that he is unable to find anything, unable to absorb anything, because he is only thinking of the thing he is seeking, because he has a goal, because he is obsessed with his goal."
– Siddhartha (in Hermann Hesse’s Siddhartha)
I first came across this quote when studying information retrieval algorithms at Drexel University. Always the intellectual optimist, I decided, for my final project, to research the algorithms used to achieve Google’s page ranking. The book Google page rank and beyond was my first step in the journey. As I found myself wearily wading through Markov chains, I found myself aimlessly thumbing through the book; I turned to the back cover, apparently thinking the secret to it all was hidden there. To my surprise, tucked in the back corner, was the above quote; in a sense, the secret was hidden there (this doesn’t usually happen).
Here at Interactive Design & Media, we constantly strive to find inspiring and influencial professionals who can educate our students within the field . Among those Prefessionals, we are grateful to have Hal Larsson teaching Game Design with in our Special Topics. Hal Larsson is a cofounder of Finalform Game Company, a game development studio based in Center City Philadelphia. Finalform is also a recent recipient of the Pax10 Award for their game Jamestown which was also featured at the Pax Prime this year.
The company, Final Form Games, was founded in 2009 by Halsted Larsson and the two Ambrogi brothers. They decided that the company should be based right here in Philadelphia for personal and professional reasons. “We were excited by the prospect of being among the first people creating games in Philadelphia. There’s something to that trailblazer idea. We wanted to establish a community for the industry here.” says cofounder Tim Ambrogi.
It is a pleasure to have such a talented game designer such as Hal working with our students and passing on his award winning knowledge and expertise.
Chris Ell, a recent graduate of our Interactive Design & Media program, while at the university in his junior year he started interning for the company I – Site. Through his internship experience, as well as his talent in both interactive design and development, Chris was hired by I – Site as a full time developer for the company.
As a current Interactive Design student here at the Philadelphia University I constantly need to keep up-to-date with the latest technology to help myself stay ahead of the game. This field is extremely competitive and as I approach graduation I see that I must prepare now for what awaits me in this massive digital world I have yet to thoroughly explore. I was watching the news this week and a saw an interesting story about an artificial intelligence computer system released by IBM. This question answering computing system called Watson is outperforming it’s human opponents on the famous quiz show Jeopardy.
Interactive Design students create User Experience and Interface Designs for PhilaU campus
As mention in the last post, the Interactive Design & Media Undergraduate program worked on a User Experience / User interface design project based on designing a mobile application that would serve a need for Philadelphia University’s Campus. The Project consisted of students identifying areas around campus they felt a Mobile Application could be best used to solve a problem or a need for the University. After students picked a certain area, they developed Personas and interviewed targeted individuals they felt would benefit from their App. Once interviews were concluded, Students then created a task analysis clarifying each input and output to be designed in shaping the overall User Experience. This also included reading the Apple Human Interface guidelines, iPhone Human interface guidelines, iPad guidelines and the Android guidelines. All this planning resulted in undergraduates first iPhone and iPad designs project. The results were great and with the help of legendary product engineer, Mike Lee and some insightful tips from Cathy Shive whom at the time was senior Cocoa developer at a two-time Apple Design Award-winning Mac software company.
Interactive Design students create User Experience and Interface Designs for PhilaU campus