Commanding Chaos for Coworking, Open Source and Creative Communities

Wii News Channel, iPhone, Multitouch

Sun, 01/28/2007 - 15:12 -- rprice

Yesterday, Nintendo released the Wii News Channel, which gives you a news interface and a world map showing where all the stories come from. What I think is different about this product is the fact that you're using the "Wiimote" (rhymes with "remote") to navigate through the interface. This video from YouTube demonstrates the interface:

I'm sure the Wiimote is built on some proprietary technology, because previous applications like a Gyromouse cost a lot more (about $70) than the console remote ($40). I'm excited about technologies like this becoming more affordable and available to consumers and application developers. If the big companies (Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft, ?Apple?) do basic things like news, weather, music, movies, then what can the smaller niche guys come up with? Internet-enabled, beefy video, tactile interfaces could be yet another of the movements that bring home users and creatives out of keyboard and mouse land.

On the same trend is Apple's announcement of multi-touch interfaces on a mainstream device like the iPhone. Honestly, I think they really still have a few tricks up their sleeve as far as using a touch interface with their software, but the handful of tricks the showed us with the iPhone are a good start.

I looked far and wide for a video that would just show off the multi-touch features of the iPhone, but I didn't find any I liked, so instead I decided to show off this video by (I think) NYU's Media Lab on future applications of multi-touch interfaces.

I think my favorite is the sound board they had. Can you imagine a node-based compositing system that uses this interface? If you know anything about compositing for film, you know that your tree can get very confusing even for a simple composite. Being able to "pinch" in to find the node or filter you're looking for would be great. I'm sure there are thousands of other applications just waiting to be written. What would you do with multi-touch?

UPDATE: Here is a neat use for the Wiimote: they use it for gesture recognition, just like mouse gestures, that then trigger a command.

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