Tuesday, May 22, 2018


TwittARound – an augmented reality Twitter viewer on the iPhone 3GS, that shows live tweets around your location on the horizon. I can’t wait to see the new wave of applications that will come out of the combination of GPS + compass on the new iPhone.
developer website via TechCrunch


Just Behave: How User Behavior Influences Search Results

If you wanted to research something—the musician Johnny Cash, for example—would you go to a search engine or a library? There are many studies on search usage. It’s safe to say that at least 50% of people now turn to search engines for information.

findings on searcher behavior helps us to understand why search engines are trying to find new ways to come up with automated search assistance systems, recommendations and query reformulation assistance, such as “Did you mean…”

Microsoft’s new Bing search engine is labeled as a “new Decision Engine”. Its technology hopes to help searchers make more informed decisions by being more intuitive. How is Bing reading our minds? They studied how people use the Web.

Success in search engines was never quantity of pages vs. quality. It still is not. Rather, search engine market success is keenly tied to understanding user behavior and this is becoming more and more obvious every day.

The Just Behave column looks into searcher behavior and how search engines constantly tweak their operations to improve user experience. It discusses recent research, searcher behavior stats and future trends such as personalization and more

The article provides a broad introduction and background on user behavior and search engines, interestingly recommendation engines and collective intelligence are barely mentioned on the article. A very direct relation to my work on HINTeractions and the development of value added services based on behavioural data in space.


Vague Scientist

Johnson-Laird inspired comic “Vagueness is a solution rather than a problem.” P.N. Johnson-Laird, Mental Models, 1983.
via Beyond the Beyond


Cartagen a framework for dynamic mapping

Great project by Jeffrey Warren from MIT Design Ecology group. Cartagen draws maps dynamically on the client side, maps are drawn dynamically as opposed to downloading tiles for every zoom level as most other mapping applications work nowadays. This means a huge improvement in flexibility and data speeds for mapping applications, only layers of data to be displayed are downloaded.

Vector mapping is done in native HTML 5, which runs on the iPhone and the Android platforms. The styling of Maps is done using GSS: geo style sheets.

Just like CSS for styling web pages, GSS is a specification for designing maps. Adapted for dynamic data sources, GSS can define changing geographic elements, display multiple datasets, and even respond to contextual tags like “condition:poor”.

In addition to the technological advantages it provides an API for String-based geocoding making “semantic geocoding” available to a huge range of devices that rely on GPS networks.

String-based geocoding (i.e. “map Bhagalpur, India”) allows users to produce their own maps from in the field with only a basic cell phone. This widens participation to 4 billion cell phone users worldwide, as well as to rural regions outside the reach of the internet. Geographic mapping with text messages has applications in disaster response and health care.


Ork posters

really lovely typographic prints at Ork Posters


Oil: A History

Great collection of information visualisation spreads from GOOD Magazine Oil: A History


Just Landed…

Just Landed – 36 Hours from blprnt on Vimeo.

People share a lot of information in their tweets — some of it shared intentionally, and some of it which could be uncovered with some rudimentary searching. I wondered if it would be possible to extract travel information from people’s public Twitter streams by searching for the term ‘Just landed in…’.

more info at blprnt


Moleskine & I.D. “A Week in Your Life”

In celebration of the launch of the new Folio Collection Moleskine has partnered with renowned international design publication I.D. Magazine to create “A Week In Your Life”, a project dedicated to the creativity and expression of 13 carefully curated artists, thinkers, and designers.

There is a video diary for each entry. My favourite: Louise Campbell


wolf and pig


Jeff Veen, “Designing for Big Data”

Jeff Veen talks about information visualisation projects he’s been involved in at google and elsewhere in the context or participation and information. He notes how the practice has evolved from storytelling to discovery.
I never realised that the fountain on Broadwick St was the one identified as the source of the cholera outbreak by John Snow, also the pub across the road is named after him. I’ve worked on the area for years.

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A research blog about interaction, design research, urban informatics, ambient computing, visualisation, emerging technologes and their impact on the built environment.

About me

This is a blog by Gonzalo Garcia-Perate a PhD researcher at The Bartlett, looking at adaptive ambient information in urban spaces.

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