Michael Darnell of Microsoft Mediaroom presented the results of a comparative study of six ways to skip advertisements on TV shows captured on a digital recorder. The interaction modes progressed from a simple “fast forward” to a more complex navigation mode. He concluded that users’ preferred interaction mode was when the system presented different miniature scenes of the show where the user can navigate to potentially skip advertising. It turns out that this is also the interaction mode where users typically have no memory of the ads being presented, as they are not quite visible on the screen.
We then took a tour of the city, which is mainly industrial. However, Tampere is surrounded by two large lakes that offer quite the dramatic landscape.
This morning, we were treated to an interesting presentation from Nokia. The researcher showed us some concepts on the company’s drawing board, including “Mixed Reality”, which uses accelerometers and GPS mobile phones to augment reality by overlapping data elements over video images. Thus, the user can point to a museum in front of him to see information appear (the museum’s opening hours, comments of users who have been there, etc.)
The concept is not entirely new but its execution is very impressive. I was especially impressed by a demonstration of Navteq technology, which uses a laser-equipped vehicle to capture the architecture of a city and create a highly detailed 3D model, which is later combined with video images captured by users’ mobile devices to display relevant information as if it were actually glued to the surface (creating the “Mixed Reality” effect).