Multitouch, real & imagined

  • MIT’s Technology Review features multi-touch UI pioneer Jeff Han in a new video.  He talks about ways these screens can get around the "thin straw" of keyboard mouse input; the potential for better storyboarding applications; and more.
  • Mark Coleran has carved out what seems to be a pretty cool gig, designing computer interfaces shown in movies.  His design for a table in The Island resembles the Microsoft Surface concept. [Via]  Mark’s work reminds me of the time we visited the set of one of the CSI shows and met the folks responsible for those Director-powered graphics–you know, the ones that convince average viewers that computers can read The Iliad reflected off the head of a pin.  Thanks a lot for that, guys. 😉
  • Meanwhile the interface of the iPhone I picked up on Saturday remains a completely imaginary one: thanks to AT&T, I can’t activate the damn thing with my corporate cell number, which means I can’t get past the welcome screen.  Note to self: the whole sequence of
    1. Get all excited, buy lovely, seductive gizmo
    2. Figure out whether said gizmo can actually be used with phone number, work email, etc.

    should actually be reversed.  Gah. This would be that bleeding edge I’ve heard so much about. (It does feel great in one’s hand, however. ;-P)

6 thoughts on “Multitouch, real & imagined

  1. Not sure exactly what your activation problem is, but this may help….
    Apple Insider
    [Thanks, though this addresses a different problem (numbers belonging to a different region than the one in which the account holder now resides)–one I’ve encountered in the past. My problem now is that I was recently made to shift my number to a state where the company is responsible for it (and to buy an unwanted $300 BlackJack in the process). Now AT&T won’t let me activate the phone using that number & apparently won’t release it so that I can go back to submitting expense reports by hand. Gee, it’s not like they could have seen this coming (or had time to prepare)… –J.]

  2. John-
    Thanks for posting the Jeff Han link! It makes my head spin when thinking about this combined with Photoshop.
    What can you report from the inside regarding Adobe’s view on this technology?
    [Dang–my whole inline response got deleted in a browser crash. So, short answer: really interesting stuff, Adobe UI has lots of ideas, but we need cooperation and info from the hardware makers. Without more info (schedules, capabilities, details on APIs, etc.), it’s hard to prioritize these features over other ones that would benefit all users (i.e. ones that wouldn’t require purchase of a new monitor/input device). That said, I keep blogging this stuff because like a lot of people here, I find the possibilities very exciting. –J.]
    I’m hopeful that one day I can manipulate even my Raw images in a UI like this. Even if I’m only dragging sliders in ACR, I’d love the ability to manipulate more than one slider at a time, select multiple thumbnails with one hand, etc.
    Thanks for your blog content- as always, good stuff.
    [Cool; thanks for saying so. –J.]

  3. Congrats on the new iPhone. I took my daughter to look at them, and I have to admit they are cool. In the 10 minutes I played with it, I was pretty impressed with the interface, and thin form factor.
    I like my Cingular 8125 – but the iPhone definitely makes it seem the size of a brick.
    I just can’t seem to get over the $600 price tag. I keep telling my daughter that instead of horse lessons 4 times a week, we could have all those fancy gadgets, but she doesn’t buy it.
    Sorry to hear about the customer service issues – that is definitely something we have discussed before.

  4. Hey, just a quick note if you haven’t done it already: You can activate the phone and get a new number assigned, and then have AT&T ‘port’ your ‘real’ number over later once you get all the info. You could even set up call forwarding to the new number in the mean time, but I don’t think txt messages get forwarded.
    I also had a crazy difficult time activating my iphone with my NY number i’ve used for years, but finally got it set up about 24 hours later.
    [Yeah, but even if I were willing to part with my phone number (at least for a while), apparently I can’t get my email on the phone. I know people are working on that, but I don’t know if/when it’ll be solved. Bah… –J.]

  5. Wow, Mark Coleran has done quite a bit of work on television shows and movies. What an awesome job! Thanks for sharing, John. I always wondered who does this type of work.

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