Onswipe is a digital platform that allows publishers to showcase both their personal and professional online content using responsive design. Most social platforms and publishing tools such as WordPress are mobile and tablet-friendly — however, Onswipe’s responsive design capabilities takes this one step further by scaling and/or adjusting the content to best fit the viewer’s respective device in a highly stylized manner using HTML5. Originally launched for tablets, Onswipe is now available for mobile devices as well.
Similar to popular magazine-like tools such as Flipboard, Onswipe’s touch interface provides a clean and user-friendly experience with embedded content. Publishers are able to customize their content with their brand colors and logo(s), and even choose from various layout permutations based on whether their content is more heavily image or text-based. Like Pickie, Onswipe also allows for social integration through Facebook Connect – creating unique browsing experiences for its users, who can favorite, find, highlight, and share content based on their personal preferences.
Pickie is a digital shopping catalogue that allows users to customize their content through personal interests and social activity (e.g. likes, brands followed, mentions) across channels such as Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook. Similar to Flipboard, it is launching first as an iPad magazine.
Pickie provides users with products in various categories such as Home Goods, Arts, Gadgets, Furniture, Crafts, Gifts, and Clothing, and features trending/popular product listings alongside editorial content, too. The tablet app also pulls in the user’s friends’ reviews and social commentary with key product details such as price and availability – the digital version of shopping with a friend. Given that consumers are 20% more likely to trust online recommendations from people they know or recognize (source: Nielsen’s Global Online Consumer Survey), this last feature is especially valuable for both consumers and market research purposes. According to Tech Crunch, 90 percent of mobile shopping now takes place on the iPad – and with the increasing tendencies for iPad users to browse content while watching TV and relaxing at home, Pickie provides users with a clean direct point of purchase retail option to fill that time. The external social sharing opportunities are countless, whether it’s the option for users to post their wishlist items to Pinterest or tweet out about products that they recommend.
We first looked at Project Glass in February before it was even formally named (and then again, in April). The Google I/O conference today featured a real time demo with skydivers jumping out of a plane wearing Project Glass headgear – all of which was broadcast live from their glasses to the conference through Google Hangouts. Attendees watched this first-person footage as the skydivers landed on the roof of San Francisco’s Moscone Center (the site of today’s conference), jumped on to bikes, and rode on to the stage to a cheering crowd.
This past week, we have seen indications that Microsoft is looking to strengthen its presence within the social realm – not by creating its own digital platform(s), but by potentially buying existing tools such as Yammer (a software and file-sharing service with sophisticated social integration, frequently referred to as a ‘Facebook for professionals’). With The Wall Street Journal reporting on Microsoft’s rumored $1.2 billion acquisition of Yammer, this is part of a growing trend to improve digital/social capabilities in the workplace environment. LinkedIn spent $119 million for SlideShare last month, and even Facebook now allows file-sharing for select groups. Should Microsoft focus their social presence through workplace integration, they will also be going up against Google’s similar efforts with Google Drive.
Looking back on the week’s highlights in the online and social realm, from a creative standpoint.
10am One Thing Posts
Last month, we looked at ZeroN – a sensor-tracking system that was developed at the MIT Media Lab by Jinha Lee, a Ph.D. student and research assistant.
MIT Media Lab students have caught our eye again – this time with an invention kit created by Jay Silver and Eric Rosenbaum. The two graduate students’ MaKey MaKey turns everyday objects into touchpads and even allows for interaction with online games. Using alligator clips and USB cables, MaKey MaKey is a printed circuit board with an ATMega32u4 micro controller running Arduino Leonardo firmware. According to Eric’s MIT page, it “uses the Human Interface Device (HID) protocol to communicate with your computer, and it can send keypresses, mouse clicks, and mouse movements”.
Stilla is an iOS app and online tool that allows users to stitch up to three images together from a single moment. When the resulting digital image is rotated, the lighting changes and viewers are exposed to various angles of the image frames – taking into consideration which direction the photographer was pointing the camera to determine lighting and blending levels.