Laundry list for ubicomp
In the last issue of ACM interactions, there is an interesting paper called "When users "do" the Ubicomp" by Antti Oulasvirta. The paper starts off by discussing the 2 perspectives of ubiquitous computing: on the one hand, the sort of research/outcomes you see in conferences and on the other hand, what the author calls:
"present-day IT infrastructure, the real ubicomp, is a massive noncentralized agglomeration of the devices, connectivity and electricity means, applications, services, and interfaces, as well as material objects such as cables and meeting rooms and support surfaces that have emerged almost anarchistically, without a recognized set of guiding principles"
... which is very close to what Bell and Dourish described in their paper Yesterday’s tomorrows: notes on ubiquitous computing’s dominant vision. Oulasvirta wonders if the inherent complexity of ubicomp is one one key explanation to why these applications have not conquered the consumer market. Relying on different results from ubicomp studies, he presents " a laundry list of approaches to improving ubicomp infrastructures":
"1) minimizing overheads that create temporal seams between activities; 2) making remote but important resources, such as connectivity or cables, better transparent locally and digitally; 3) propagating metadata on migration of data from device to device; 4) supporting ad hoc uses of proximate devices' resources like projectors, keyboards, and displays; 5) triggering digital events like synchronization of predetermined documents with physical gestures; 6) supporting appropriation of material properties for support surfaces"
Why do I blog this? some interesting issues to consider here, although I am not sure (or perhaps interested) in everyone of them, some are close to current interests (for example (2)).