Guest Post: Ian Fitzpatrick // @ianfitzpatrick
I find myself increasingly-inspired by the new directions in which people are taking ambient information. The notion of glanceable has enough cultural traction to merit its own tumblr, which is probably a decent indicator that the warm glow of small data has arrived.
Blink(1) by ThingM is a USB-powered light that glows gently when a simple bit of data is triggered on a user's machine or online. It's customizable, such that the meaning of the lit diode is of specific personal import, rather than just a general, non-specific indicator. Also: it's beautiful.
BakerTweet was ambient data at its' finest. Enough has been written about it to fill volumes, but I continue to be drawn to the elegant simplicity of '_____________ is coming out of the oven (so get here before it's gone)' - vitality without urgency or self-importance.
I wonder frequently, as someone who plays a role in crafting systems that connect people with brands, if there's not a lot more space to explore these kinds of experiences at an enterprise scale: smarter experiences that communicate one simple idea about our relationships to products and services from afar, intuitively, without trumpets.