Shared Media Surfaces

The Shared media surfaces project is based around developing experimental shared media surfaces with embedded ambient intelligence for two distinct for use in a family kitchen. Allowing different family members to view relevant group/shared and also individually targeted information in both ambient/passive and active interactions.

Developing experimental Shared media surfaces with embedded ambient intelligence

Information displayed/accessible through the media surface includes:

  • calendar information
  • Weather and transport
  • targeted or relevant notices and news
  • Relevant decorative content
  • Relevant personal content

Within the system particular attention is be paid to (shared) access to information and levels of relevant privacy;
Eg; it may be ok for our family to see all our scheduled holiday plans but if a work colleague calls round perhaps we do not want them to see it on our kitchen wall.

Developing experimental Shared media surfaces with embedded ambient intelligence for use in a family kitchen. Allowing distinct groups to view relevant group/shared and also individually targeted information in both ambient/passive and active interactions.

related (books, papers, products, URLS etc)

  • Müller, Jörg & Alt, Florian & Michelis, Daniel & Schmidt, Albrecht. (2010). Requirements and design space for interactive public displays. MM’10 – Proceedings of the ACM Multimedia 2010 International Conference. 1285-1294. 10.1145/1873951.1874203. []
  • P. Dalsgaard, and K. Halskov, “Designing Urban Media Facades: Cases and Challenges,” Proc. 2010 SIGCHI Conf. Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI 10), ACM, 2010, pp. 2277–2286.
  • E. Hornecker, “Interactions around a Contextually Embedded System,” Proc. 5th Int’l Conf. Tangible, Embedded, and Embodied Interaction (TEI 10), ACM, 2010, pp. 169–176.
  • Vogel, D. BalaKrishnan, R. Interactive Public Ambient Displays: Transitioning from Implicit to Explicit, Public to Personal, Interaction with Multiple Users (UIST 2004)

The situation keeps reminding me of the conflicting visions of the future of media surfaces, as an illustration, compare and contrast the urgent intrusive vision of Microsoft versus the quiet, calm vision from Berg/Dentsu. Of particular note is how the MS vision sits between the communications of people – moderating and mediating them rather than unobtrusively facilitating them.

The first prototype is currently built on a low power Raspberry Pi 3 running Raspbian linux attached to a Dell 24 inch monitor in Portrait mode. The screen has been installed and active since February 2017 and runs 24 hours a day. The screen being put into sleep mode automatically by the Pi running CRON jobs at 23:30 and 06:45 to switch it on and off.

The screen scrapes live school timetabling data, simple 7 day live weather forecast as text and icons, and has a carousel feature that transitions to two other data screens every 2 minutes, showing a national daily temperature map and a national rain probability map for the next 3 hour period. The data is boots-trapped from bash/Linux, launching a kiosk style shell of Chromium Browser via x-windows. Central code for the data displays are actually served to the screen remotely from a separate http server. This allow easy editing of source and preference files of the data displays via HTML/CSS and javascript without direct physical or SSH remote access to the raspberry pi controlling the screen.

A number of early iterations investigated use of Resin.os as a middleware platform or complete control of this (and any other similar device) Using docker software containers, a complete software image for the configurations and functions of the Pi can be remotely administered to as many internet connected physical devices as is required.

Future development may well return to using Resin as a way to handle easy deployment and updating, allowing testing at scale with easy remote access and maintenance.