Media Technology

Augmented reality in museums

My brother recently gave an academic talk on augmented reality use in museums, using AR as the medium. Museums are always the first application of AR people think of, and it often doesn’t work in practice as well as you’d expect. I think Geoff has a lot of insight into where it does and doesn’t …

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Free Online Intro to AI class

Wow — over 100,000 people have registered for a free online Intro to AI class to be taught by Sebastian Thrun and Peter Norvig this Fall. Kudos to Stanford for trying out this experiment in education on a mass scale. They’re also offering introductory classes in Databases in Machine Learning. Introduction to Artificial Intelligence – Fall 2011 …

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Gmail Snooze

I try to avoid using my Inbox as a to-do list, but this still looks like a handy little script… (Originally shared by Ben Bederson) Scripting Gmail to snooze emails (so they come back later) is cool! (Actually, scripting Gmail is cool). But I bet Boomerang ( doesn’t like it so much. On the other …

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I’ve started playing with the free SynthCam iPhone app… here’s the description from the app’s webpage (marclevoy): “Cell phones have a small aperture, hence a large depth of field. In other words, most of the scene is in focus at once. However, if you record video while moving the phone slightly, and you add the …

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Adding irony to injury for Kodachrome

Reporting on Kodak’s retiring of their famed Kodachrome film, NPR’s All Things Considered, Melissa Block interviewed photographer Steve McCurry (emphasis mine):

I’m looking at one of your most iconic images, this is the photo of a young Afghan girl… she’s wearing a brick-red head scarf and there’s a green background and her eyes are just popping off the screen

I think that just about says it all. You can also view an online gallery of what some of the great photos taken with Kodachrome look like after they’ve been scanned, digitized, and re-rendered on whatever computer monitor you happen to have. Such vivid colors!

Latest Plastic Logic E Ink-based reader

TechCrunch has a nice video showing off Plastic Logic’s new prototype e-reader based on E Ink. Plastic Logic’s main advantage is their plastic backplane (rather than glass) which is lighter and less fragile. They’re also pitching their interface to focus more on business use — in particular the ability to annotate documents (using a touchscreen) and a sidebar that allows them jump to different pages more quickly.

This is just a prototype and so probably an unfair criticism, but I do note that when the demonstrator selects a different document and says “we are able to quickly move from any of the last five documents you’ve been reading” there is an 8.5 second delay before the new document comes up.