Posts tagged with: app

The future of touch screens is in good hands

I stumbled upon this video about the possible future of touch screens by Chris Harrison from CMU and found it amazing. You can see him demonstrating their TouchTools and TapSense apps for tablets.

The device they put together is able to achieve something really cool: anticipating what a user wants to do next. By positioning their hand as if they were actually holding a physical object over the glass users get access to that same object except on screen. In fact, the smart screen recognises the grip unique to a product and its intended use.

While some of the examples shown may provide little real-world use, such as a camera or a mouse, this little experiment makes you think about all the possibilities associated with this type of technology.

What I find even more impressive though, is the precise recognition of different types of touch input such as fingertip or knuckle by the device. This opens up a lot of possibilities in terms of interface interactions, as a single button could output various results depending the nature of the touch and essentially triple the amount of possible actions on a given screen.
I can't think of a current app that would directly benefit from this, except for something like Knock maybe. And even then it's a long shot.
Nevertheless, it's going to be really interesting to explore new ways to interact with screens in the future.

Bohemian Coding released Fonts and I'm not convinced

It was not too long ago that the guys over at Bohemian Coding announced the retirement of their font management app Fontcase. Apparently, the main reason behind this unfortunate move was because:

"[...]a large percentage of our customer base just didn't get the idea of font activation and why such a thing was ever needed."

However, in a recent turn of events Bohemian Coding released a brand new app called Fonts – Simple Font Organizing. It is based on a completely new build and should not be looked at as a simple revamp of the now defunct Fontcase. Surprisingly, some of the key features of traditional font management software have been removed, most notably: font (auto-)activation. Instead, your Fonts Collection is now directly synched with Font Book and other Mac apps.

As for the visual side of things, the user interface has adopted a fresh flat look and feels like it just broke out of iOS 7. It may take some time getting used to it but hey why not? The designers might have started a new trend right there.

In my book, this doesn't qualify as a font management app, because a key feature is missing: font activation. For me, this is a deal breaker. The developers complained that people did not understand why they should use Fontcase back then, but now that a major feature has been removed (among others it seems), I don't see how you could attract new users this time around since all it does, is give you a preview of your Font Book.

It's wait and see for now. I'm not pulling the trigger unless some significant changes are made in the future to improve Fonts.