Siggraph 2006 is in Boston,
and they had a free public reception this afternoon (which I saw in one of the free weekly papers,
but was unable to confirm through official channels). I headed over there with Marty, and fortunately the paper was right. We were able to check out the emerging technology area (their page is here and a video preview is here) There were many really neat applications. Lots of what my advisor at Tufts would call reality-based-interfaces (RBI) where the user interacts with a computer application by manipulating real physical objects. There were many table top devices, one where multiple users could collaborate to create “music” (more like sound) by manipulating a large number of objects on a projector table. Turning objects to make them louder and softer and moving them around to change their interactions.
I think my favorite demo that I actually got to use was the Forehead Retina System because it made me really able to sense objects through physical sensations on my forehead. The effect really has to be experienced to be believed. It worked really well for linear objects, where it was easy to feel a line moving back and forth on my forehead, but not so much for a round object where the effect just felt mushy.
We also got to see the Art Gallery where there were some cool works, including an exhibit where you could interact with butterflies in side a mirror.
Stuff like this makes me wonder what I am doing with my career…