When I first saw a tv clip of Microsoft’s Surface my first reaction was that it looked like an over sized video iPod. But if the demos work the way they’re shown, it could be a pretty cool tool. Between the spatial arrangement of elements, the zooming in and out with the hands on the table it reminded me of a Ted video I saw a while ago of Jeff Han. I’ve embedded it above.
The table also got me thinking of the interface in a different kind of way. Since Microsoft is creating essentially the hardware (physical table) and software (how it’s powered), they also perhaps are the only people that can create the interface which means if they’re targeting the surface to casino’s and restaurants they will have to have a consulting team to actually work with the client to create the perfect app. That’s nothing too unique of course, just interesting to think out loud about some of their next steps.
I also just came across the above Ted video “Blaise Aguera y Arcas’s short-but-astonishing demo of his Seadragon and Photosynth technologies”. Again if this visual format can work, it would again suggest opportunities to expand how intuitive navigation works on all types of screens.