Through the lens brightly.
Knowledge is power.
We have just completed the first set of “Bridgewater Stories” for Bridgewater State University – stories that are told in 60 second and 30 second broadcast commercials in targeted markets and on their website. The stories capture the types of programs and culture that set the school apart, with a real focus on service to others. It’s stories of Bridgewater students using their science studies to help people’s lives in Cambodia, of students in transformative internships that shift their career direction, and of alumni who embody the culture of public service. You can see all of the stories here. And take a look behind the scenes at our multi-camera shoots in Washington and at our “small footprint” in Cambodia.
Paper coatings: what’s the difference?
Oftentimes, we are asked the difference between paper coatings, and what would make a client’s printed annual report or corporate responsibility report stand out. A paper coating helps 1) protect the piece from the elements and normal wear and tear; and 2) provides aesthetic value. The two main coatings, varnish and aqueous, both come in gloss and dull finishes.
A varnish paper coating is a petroleum-based sealant that is good for spot details that are intricate. A small design on the cover can be made glossy against a matte background, for instance, and varnish can be applied color tinted. It’s water- and dust-resistant, but can yellow over time. Varnish also takes several hours (or days) to fully dry, as it’s basically ink without pigment.
An aqueous coating is water-based and more environmentally friendly – it’s nontoxic on press. It dries quickly, within a few minutes, after being applied over the inks. It’s often applied over the whole page, instead of spots. Aqueous doesn’t yellow, and protects the piece against smudges – and fingerprints – in addition to being water- and dust-resistant.
What would be the best coating for your annual report or corporate responsibility report? If you would like your piece to look good for years to come, and be environmentally conscious to boot, then an aqueous coating would be a great choice. Varnish, however, should be taken into consideration for small, intricate details that can affect the mood and appeal of the piece.
The WD video team traveled to Washington, D.C. a couple weeks ago to film the latest in a series of television commercials we are working on with Bridgewater State University. The D.C. program provides BSU juniors and seniors the opportunity to intern at various government offices, law firms, human rights groups and other organizations. Although the weather was chilly, flowers were blooming around the city. We filmed office scenarios indoors and then ventured out to the National Mall for some of the exterior shots.
Weymouth Design’s Boston Children’s Museum website revamp was recently launched, including responsive design for mobile view on smartphones. Key facts, such as museum hours and directions, are readily accessible, with a colorful menu navigating to additional information on the site.
Gesture-based human + computer interaction design, transcending the surface
TK: Gesture-based human + computer interaction is about to become a real thing for consumers – not just in scifi movies (like Iron Man). In 2007, with the launch of the iPhone, and in 2010 with the iPad, few envisioned the tremendous growth of touchscreens as a way to interact with the user interface. Today most smartphones and all tablet devices use touch to interact with millions of apps – a whole new industry has developed. This year may see a similar period of innovation.
Gesture-based interactions are not new. Game systems like the Xbox 360 + Kinect and the Nintendo Wii have provided gesture based interaction for games. But all this is about to change with the launch of new hardware and software that takes the gesture interaction experience and brings it down to your desktop computer, laptop and mobile devices. Here are a few of the new products coming out in the near future:
- In May 2013, Leap Motion (www.leapmotion.com) will launch their small desktop box, smaller than the size of an iPod. The Leap product will create an invisible field in front of your monitor or laptop screen, allowing for hand gestures that perform functions such as navigation, swiping, zooming, and actions during PC video games, without ever touching a screen or mouse. According to the engineers behind Leap Motion, the technology is “200 times more sensitive than existing motion control technology,” and can tell the different between different parts of the hand.
- In the spring of 2013, Samsung will release their new smartphone, the Galaxy S 4. The newest model in the Galaxy S line promises to use gestural interactions to navigate the phone’s screens, with much of the same functions as touch. In addition, the phone will track the user’s eyes to determine if he or she looks away from a video that’s playing on the screen, and automatically pause it.
So what does this mean for you? Well if you’re a gamer, a lot. Early adopters will likely find their way around game apps that allow complex gestures such as firing a weapon, throwing in 3D, or turning your head to look around in an alien world… the possibilities are endless. For the medical industry, physicians in the operating room could interact with instrument video feeds to navigate more efficiently through an operation. Presentations can be more effective and engaging by using a sweep of the hand to advance slides while still focusing on the audience. Researchers and financial analysts could manipulate 3D infographics in real space to better understand data.
We are keeping an eye on gesture-based interfaces and the possibilities of new applications, new platforms and new website services we can build for the brands and organizations we partner with.
Mike in Maya Tulum, Mexico: I recently bought the Nikon D4, which doubles as a still and HD video camera. I needed to become more familiar with the video capability under extreme shooting circumstances, i.e. action, where it can be difficult to focus video using the relatively small display on the back of the camera. A yoga retreat I was attending in Mexico provided the perfect opportunity where things were moving very fast as I switched back and forth from stills to video. It was a real challenge and I learned a lot (for an old guy who’s been around the block a few times.)
HTML5 and Hybrid Apps
Tom A: One of the first questions to resolve in any app discussion is “what platform?” Do you go for “one-for-all-device” HTML5; do you “go native” and make separate apps for the iPhone and Android; is there some hybrid option that makes sense? There were strong advocates for each approach at a March 4 Mobile Monday event – and great examples of apps built in each category. The choice comes down to the app’s objectives, its context in terms of audience and complexity, and, of course, time and money. One speaker noted that the trend over the next few years is for more hybrid apps. Take a look at the Mobile Monday event.
We have done pure “web apps” in HTML5, and hybrid apps; call us app agnostics. This iPad app we did for Brooklyn Law School is a hybrid app.