Reboot 8: Mobile presence

The thing that struck me most at Reboot 8 was the emergence of the mobile as a platform. In particular, this platform is finally allowing the kinds of 3rd party and community development that we have been lacking for the last few years. The first signs of this are simple modifications to existing applications and in particular the addition of presence.

Jyri Engeström showed simple but effective interfaces for what he terms ‘social peripheral vision’, the ability to glance at information about a social circle and to gain an awareness of other’s plans in both space and time. Simple additions to the current phone interface (like the address book and calendar) can show a lot of contextual information. Jyri is working on Jaiku that is still under wraps, but talking with Mika Raento gave some clues as to what this might be. Mika has worked on interesting applications like ContextContacts at the University of Helsinki.

Marko Ahtisaari talked about the Seven Challenges to our Shared Mobile Future, and in particular the overall goal of reaching the next 2 billion mobile phone users. It’s clear that this future is not just about Nokia’s multimedia computers, but will also be about making simple voice and text experiences more beautiful and engaging.

Chris Heathcote presented a ‘manifesto’ for the mobile internet; design patterns and approaches for the internet on mobile devices. He demonstrated the new Mobile web server as a universal tool for things like presence. This brings with it interesting issues like serving data with a device that may be out of coverage or batteries.

Finally there was a quick demo of Plazes, and the new Plazes mobile client beta that looks very impressive. It uses cell ID to share user context, only when instructed to. Given that Plazes already has an active user-community its possible that this will be the first widely used mobile presence application.

Related things:

  1. Mobile Interaction with the Real World My short position paper “A graphic language for touch-based interactions” has been accepted to the Mobile HCI 2006 workshop Mobile Interaction with the Real World. The workshop aims to “develop an understanding of how......
  2. Retro-fitting mobile phones with RFID The promise of NFC is about easily using mobile phones as a part of daily life: ticketing, paying with a credit card, opening doors, sharing, printing and downloading in the physical world. But until......
  3. Three papers on mobile payments The weblog ‘Putting people first’ links to three interesting papers from CHI 2008 on mobile payments. From meiwaku to tokushita! Lessons for digital money design from Japan. Mainwaring, S., March, W., and Maurer, B.......
  4. Mobile payment demo The near-future success of NFC depends on the usability of mobile payments and ticketing. As interaction designers we of course argue that the success hinges on good design of this experience and recent news......
  5. Mobile Camp NYC I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be presenting at Mobile Camp NYC on Saturday 19th May in New York City. I’ll be presenting some history and context around Physical Hyperlinks and Touch-based interactions. Update......

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2 Comments

  1. Posted 5 July 2006 at 11:45 | Permalink

    Also the Imity demo. These guys were the ones that made the bluetooth presence map/people finder on Reboot, but the mobile app they’re working on looks interesting.

  2. Timo
    Posted 16 July 2006 at 15:50 | Permalink

    Ah yes, I completely forgot, their Bluetooth map was indeed impressive.

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