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Mashups January 31, 2009

Posted by jmoran21 in Big Brother, Humor, Law, Perception, Tech.
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Tuesday was the first meet of New Media 2, and a sizable chunk of time was devoted to Twitter. My opinions haven’t changed much since my first exposure (useless to me, but a potential goldmine). Apparently others feel the same, if its estimated worth is any indication.

On its own, Twitter is just another Stalk-Lite tool of Web 2.0. It’s appealing as a broad ranging, persistent text message, appealing for all the same reasons. Text lets us put in more thought and personality, better conveying our chosen web personae. Lots of Twitter mashups exist that attempt to make some sense of the chaos- Tweet News and twittermap jump to mind.

My ideas for the killer twitter app:

Twitterbell: a flash animated Tinkerbell on an accumulator. The accumulator tracks the number of unique tweets that say “I don’t believe in fairies.” and “Clap!” If the “don’t”s ever outpace the claps by more than, lets say, 500, Tinkerbell dies a gruesome cartoon death.

Twittercraft: a pan-realm twitter client integrated with Blizzard’s World of Warcraft. It would be filterable based on realm, allegiance, clan, and topic, but carry over the foreign language barriers of the main game. The key stone would be a filter for “role-playing” tweets. Imagine, a torrent of harvestable info on the races of Azeroth. Finally, a way for the major corporations of today to make major inroads into the tricky “Male Orcs Age 18-24” demographic!

ETRS (Emergency Twitter Response Service): It’s only a matter of time before common practice grants toddlers a cell phone with texting priveledges before they master vocal communication. Before long, typing onto a mini qwerty keyboard will be our primary, fastest means of communication, and to better prepare for that day, its important we get the groundwork laid now. ETRS will monitor tweets from people in distress and will then promptly dispatch the proper authorities.

America’s Most Twittered: Similar idea, in reverse. Enlist the Twitter public in helping track down fugitives, stolen goods, and missing children. How simple would it be to at least add Twitter to the Amber Alert system?

Twittered and Found: Organize all tweets regarding lost and found items, goods, and even pets. If you see a stray, just tweet the word out with a description and its whereabouts.

Plenty more ideas where those came from, although to be honest some of those ideas might already exist and I’m just too nearsighted to find them.

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Ultrahouse3000 September 4, 2007

Posted by jmoran21 in Big Brother, Robots, Tech.
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Performative Ecologies is a bit of a mouthful, but it’s an engaging concept being studied by Ruairi Glynn, found via the New Media Blog. I got the gist of it from the project synopsis, but to get the full effect you need to watch the video of the “dancers” in action. What freaks me out is the way they compete with one another for attention. There’s all kinds of dystopian robo-terror in that concept. It also doesn’t help that they share a resemblance to a certain evil mega computer.

The way the dancers learn to entertain their audience based on both the reactions of the viewer as well as the successes of their peers is a very Darwinian process that I think pretty much every piece of electronics in your house could benefit from.  This may be an essential evolution of the robo-pet, as I believe the main problem with these things is the ability to hold their owners interest. Imagine an OS that reconfigures itself based on how long it takes you to do the tasks you do most often, whether it’s in a PC or a microwave oven. In a bizarre sort of inheritance, your new gizmos can learn what you like most about the stuff you had before them, ensuring you never again hear the phrase “I liked the old one better.” Here’s one idea that could potentially exist already: one of those music visualizers that uses your webcam to read facial expressions, discovering which visuals you like best and when you’ve gotten bored of them. On second thought, people spend too much time staring at those things as it is.