Archive for Product Concepts

Eyes on the Road!

Cars and smart phones do not mix, at least not well. According to the Official US Government Website for Distracted Driving (yes, it’s that bad), thousands of people are killed each year in accidents involving a distracted driver, and the numbers are steadily climbing. There…

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Kicker Studio at the SF GOOD Ideas for Cities event

GOOD and the City of SF challenged Kicker Studio to make use of the abundance of data feeds available through the SF Department of Technology. We developed a solution to help people make better transportation choices. Here is the video of Jody’s presentation on ForaTV….

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Ghost Fingers Typing for Tablet Devices

Tablet computers offer a unique opportunity to rethink how we type, mostly because traditional touch typing doesn’t work well on them unless the tablet is resting on a flat surface, like a desk or a lap. But most of the time, we’re holding tablets, which turns typing into a process of hunt-and-peck with one hand while the other hand tries to hold the tablet steady. Keyboard solutions from mobile phones don’t work well either; they just aren’t designed for the larger screen space, and spaced out keys make for a Fitts’ Law nightmare.

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3x2x2: A New Method of Thumb Typing for Tablet Computers

Fast Company has an article 3 Ways the iPad Could Kill QWERTY. I find it unlikely that QWERTY as a typing construct is going to go away, as the system and the keyboards we know now have evolved over decades to its current refined state. See, for instance, this collection of early typewriter keyboards. However, I do think tablet PCs such as the iPad offer other possibilities for typing, especially given that typing using touchscreen keyboards as they currently are, well, sucks.

Two new typing configurations I’ve considered revolve around how we hold tablet PCs. Typically, unless you are using a stylus, a tablet is held with two hands, with thumbs on the front or side of the device, and your four remaining fingers on the back. It’s a natural, grasping gesture for humans. This leans me to think there there could be two possible new typing methods: one typing using your fingers on the back of the device by making use of ghost fingers, and another typing with just your thumbs using the screen on the front of the device.

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Product Concept: Touchscreen Conference Phone

Conference phones suck. That’s what nearly everyone told us when we started talking to them about how they used their phones—often specially-designed, very expensive phones—for conference calls. We knew this, of course, since we’ve used and disliked them before ourselves (and probably you have too). That’s why we decided to design a new VOIP conference phone for small businesses.

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Front Cameras on Vehicles

Most of us have seen the cars (often SUVs) with cameras placed on their back, looking behind them, so that drivers can easier park. These are great. What would also be helpful are small cameras on the tips of the front of cars, pointing left and right.

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TiVo on the Radio

How many times have you turned on your car radio and there’s a song playing that is halfway through? And you wish you could rewind the song (or the discussion) back to the beginning? I’d love to have a type of TiVo for the car radio.

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New blog post: Eyes on the Road! Or why my car should NOT be a giant smartphone on wheels: http://t.co/O4Z8OJ3N6S4 hours ago