Science alert! Geometry + reactive material + energy = self assembled ANYTHING (almost)
Here is a freaking cool piece of sciencey goodness for your Friday afternoon!
Self assembly at MIT
The self assembly lab at MIT are composed of designers, scientists and engineers who have been busy working away at inventing self assembly technologies. The self assembly team have been working with other departments such as mechanical engineering, computer science, media lab and architecture.
These guys have been designing specific geometries with specific materials to respond to energy and change state - which can be anything from heat, shaking, gravity, pneumatics, electronics, ANYTHING!
The research and the practise has only become possible with the cross-disciplinary collaborations between designers, scientists and engineers.
Imagine the amazing work we could do by collaborating with other agencies on this level. (If only money wasn’t an issue!)
Robotic arm + Facebook connect = all kinds of awesome
It might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I just love this! Okay, so you remember these arcade coin games?
WELL! Intel have created this awesome engagement piece based around this coin machine concept. But with the use of robotics.. Because who doesn’t love robotics?!
Users can connect via Facebook, and be bought into a live streaming environment where a sweet ass robotic arm spells out their name with blocks (share to get an extra block of course!). Users are placed in a queue to push the prize to the end of the dispenser.
Check out this short film about a couple of scientists who have just created a ‘super supercapacator’ that will enable you to charge your iphone battery in under a minute, it also has many implications for how we use and store energy. Oh, it’s also bio-degradable - Science is awesome!
New apps on the block - enabling creativity through technology
One of the trends that we are keeping a close eye on here at Holler is the increasing emergence of technology allowing consumers to express themselves more creatively. New apps in particular are allowing consumers to be able to express themselves in ways that they haven’t been able to before. It seems this space in consumer culture has been paved by the likes of Instagram, but some of the other emerging apps and digital platforms we have found allowing consumers to beter express themselves are:
Over: A super simple app with a lovely slick interface that allows consumers to generate text over an image and publish via the app to various social media outputs. It is surprisingly addictive: http://madewithover.com/
From my recent trip back to hometown, Perth:
Secondly - Vine. Tipped to be a game changer in the social space, it has a simple and beautifully designed UI which allows you to take 3 short video clips and then semalessly stitch them together to create a 6 second video. The content that is emerging on the platform is not only creative but a lot of it is really funny and interesting as well. With brands such as MSNBC and Urban Outfitters exploring the platform already, it is definitely one to watch out for: https://vine.co/
One of the really clever creative platforms we have found is Lego Cuusoo. Combining creativity and business perfectly. Essentially making a website which allows people to use CAD platform to build new lego designs. If a consumer submission receives more than 10,000 votes, Lego will start to manufacture and sell the design, sharing the proceeds with the creator. The latest design was a back to the future set:
Last but not least is Vyclone which aggregates feeds of video that users capture at a specific location. The thought being that people at a live event or popular destination can piece together a custom video using various camera angles from their own and other peoples footage.
Here is an amazing idea that will be a sure game changer for the retail market. This is huge news for my big FMCG client so will be keeping a close eye on this one! Exciting stuff!
Mobeam is a new technology that enables point-of-sale barcode scanners to read coupons, loyalty cards, and other items directly from a smartphone. It sends pulses of light to the scanner’s sensor and mimics the black and white sequencing of a standard barcode.
The technology would enable retailers to send digital coupons and gift cards online and allow smartphone users to bring them up directly on their device, eliminating the need to carry physical papers with barcoded vouchers.
Mobeam has announced that the new Samsung Galaxy S4 smartphone will be the world’s first mobile device to integrate its technology so it can beam traditional barcodes. The Galaxy S4 will be able to engage in mobile commerce at millions of locations worldwide without requiring retailers to make changes to their existing point-of-sale systems!
Mobeam’s CEO, Chris Sellers, said: Mobeam’s vision is simple: to make mobile commerce work with existing point of sale technology. Making cutting-edge smartphones work with barcodes might not sound sexy, but it means consumers now have the ability to beam items such as coupons, loyalty cards, gift cards and event tickets at millions of locations – something that was previously impossible. Barcodes are universal and won’t be replaced anytime soon, meaning retailers don’t need to upgrade their POS systems. The mobile industry now has a commerce technology that can work everywhere, and the world will see it first on the Samsung Galaxy S4.
In Israel, Coca-Cola decided to combine Facebook and face recognition technology to create FaceLook. By setting up machines across a theme park, it gave visitors a way of logging into their Facebook account using only their face and allowing them to post status updates. Simple, and a great example of the real and virtual worlds blending together.
C&A’s Facebook ‘Like’ Hangers
When Brazilian fashion retailer C&A decided to make its hanger digital, it came up with a brilliant idea to show how popular certain items are. They did this by allowing its hangers to display the number of likes each piece of clothing got on Facebook. That way, when customers wandered into the shop, they could see what the most wanted items are. This would make them more likely to purchase the item if they saw that it was more desirable. (Note: English subtitles are available by selecting captions in the video)
Singapore’s Biggest Tipping Jar
Designed to promote a reality TV series called ‘Can You Serve,’ BHH Asia Pacific created this giant vending machine which was filled with $1 coins. People could choose the establishment they wanted to tip by ‘liking’ it on Facebook. Once they did, a $1 coin would roll down the machine and make its way into the tip jar.
Twitter Vending Machine
South African brand BOS Ice Tea created this vending machine in Cape Town that serves you beverages whenever you tweet it. Through its own account, users would tweet the vending machine using the hashtag #BOSTWEET4T and it would dispense them a drink.
Swedish Army Recruitment
Looking to find 4,000 applicants for 1,500 new positions, the Swedish armed forces came up with a unique way of getting people’s attention. Revolving around helping others (since that’s what the armed forces do), a large box was placed in Stockholm city centre. Different individuals were locked in the box for a minimum of one hour with no contact from the real world. They could only be saved by those on the outside, who would replace them and the cycle would continue.
KLM Live Reply
For a while, KLM could do no wrong with its social media campaigns, releasing hit after hit with amazing regularity. This stunt was to show that KLM replies to every single tweet within an hour of it being sent, and it did this by setting up a human powered billboard that showed the reply in real life.
Tesco QR Code Shopping
The original and by far the best example of its kind, Tesco set up a QR shopping area for busy commuters in South Korea. This allowed them to do their grocery shopping while they were travelling to and from work since their lives are so busy. The success of the campaign wasn’t enough to make QR codes any greater than a fad, but it did prove that if you give it the right angle, they could be very useful.
Facebook Connected Wristbands
RFID hasn’t received much love in recent times – although Samsung and Sony are trying to change that with its NFC tags – but much like Tesco’s QR codes, RFID can really enhance an experience provided it’s implemented correctly. Mobile network provider Orange did this by getting attendeees at the Roxy Pro 2011 surf event to sign in with their Facebook account and transfer that data to a bracelet that contained RFID technology. From there, people could post to their profiles and win daily prizes.
Angry Birds Live
Created for T-Mobile, people in Barcelona got to play a real-life game of Angry Birds through a smartphone and see the destruction unfold in front of them as they played. Genius in every sense of the word.
Another great use of QR codes displayed at the beginning of 2012 where Heineken, at a music festival, decided to give everyone personalised QR codes. Those attending the event could scan them and find out something interesting about said person, giving them a nice icebreaker.
The Amazing Mind-Reader
Not one that strictly uses social media, but still a great way of using social to hammer home a point. An online bank gets a ‘psychic’ to tell unsuspecting visitors detailed information about themselves, showing just how much information we reveal about ourselves online.
The Literal Twitter Follow-back
Pizza chain Mellow Mushroom took the concept of following on Twitter a bit too literally as it dreamt up of the this great campaign. For everyone who followed its Twitter account, it would have its mascot literally follow them in real life. With family and friends in on the act, it made what could have been a creepy idea into something fun.
Mercedes-Benz Twitter Race
Using only the tweets of fans to run their cars, Mercedes-Benz created this innovative campaign that pitted four drivers against each other, choosing their own path to the finish line. Four tweets was the equivalent of one mile and so it got a lot of engagement that made it a massively successful campaign.
KLM Meet & Seat
Another KLM entry, this time using the power of LinkedIn to connect you with passengers on your flight. Making it an opt-in service, you can choose what information to reveal about yourself and see a seat map of the plane, showing who else opted into the service. It wasn’t as successful as its other campaigns but it did show that KLM was trying to take social media in a different direction, and give it more practical uses.
The Real-Life Facebook Wall
A small village in Switzerland called Obermutten decided to take the concept of the Facebook wall literally by creating their own physical Facebook wall. Anyone who liked the page would have their page printed out and put on the wall. What was a small campaign exploded in size, to the point that it was more engaging than Lady Gaga’s, Coca-Cola’s and Justin Bieber’s Facebook pages.
Adidas and Google - Advertising reimagined. Check out this talking shoe that broadcasts updates online based on your movement using a small computer, accelerometer, pressure sensor, a gyroscope and bluetooth to your Android. Not the greatest use of social but definitely onto something good here!
Google Glasses are here!! Enter via Twitter or Google+ for your chance to own a pair!
Google Glasses Now Available To Pre-order For $1500 - if you are chosen. Last year when Google unveiled their new Google Glasses eyewear, they offered developers a limited number of units for the same price. Today Google has once again opened up pre-orders for their Google Glasses. Google has a limited stock of 8,000 Google Glasses available in this pre-order round, and the application process includes a small task to complete. To be eligable for a pair of Google Glasses simply tell Google via Google+ or Twitter “What you’d do with your Glass in 50 words or less”. You can include up to 5 photos or images and a short video (15 secs max) if you would like to the hashtag #ifihadglass.
Google explains: “We’re looking for bold, creative individuals who want to join us and be a part of shaping the future of Glass. We’d love to make everyone an explorer, but we’re starting off a bit smaller. We’re still in the early stages, and while we can’t promise everything will be perfect, we can promise it will be exciting”
For more information on getting your hands on a pair of Google Glasses jump over to the Google website. Deadline for applications is February 27th 2013.
“If you are chosen, we will reach out to you with an invitation to become a Glass Explorer (please remember to follow us so that we can contact you directly). Explorers will each need to pre-order a Glass Explorer Edition for $1500 plus tax and attend a special pick-up experience, in person, in New York, San Francisco or Los Angeles.”