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Weekly Inspirations: May 6th, 2016

Here are the things that I think are worth reading and checking out this week:

New tech turns your skin into a touchscreen for your smartwatch

One of the biggest challenges with smartwatches is trying to navigate through apps on a relatively tiny screen. While smartphones and tablets have gotten bigger over the years, the gadgets we wear on our wrists need to stay small to avoid looking terribly unfashionable. Today a team at the Future Interfaces Group, a research lab within Carnegie Mellon University, released a look at a novel solution to this problem: making the skin on your arm and hand act like a touchscreen for your smartwatch.
Read the article here

Designing The Voice Experience

More companies are beginning to incorporate natural language technologies into their products. Since Speaktoit, inc. launched its artificial intelligence API in 2014, more than 25,000 developers have signed up for the platform. Voice experiences are being built into smart home technologies, warehouse management systems, automobile systems, wearables, consumer electronics, assistive technologies and more. This article looks at some of the basics for how to design a voice lead experience.
Read the article here

Style Over Everything

Talk to career artists and art directors, however, and they’ll tell you that the key to getting commissions and hired full-time isn’t artistic perfection — it’s artistic expression. Those that hire creative talent want, and pay handsomely for one-of-a-kind voices that shock, provoke, scream, joke, and wow — even if they are a little messy at times. Speaking in your own voice is the smartest thing you can do to distinguish yourself from the crowd. And let’s be honest, it’s much more fun. Someone can always come along and be a “better” artist than you, but no one can take away your style. It’s defensible, something you can lean back on regardless of trends and something you can sell that others can’t (one-of-a-kind = more valuable!). We asked some of our Behance members why style is so instrumental to success and, more importantly, how they developed their own unique voice. They agreed that it wasn’t something as straightforward as a race with a start and finish line, but an ever-evolving process.
Read the article here


Ping pong is a game that’s easy to pick up and highly difficult to master. The Virtual Table Tennis Trainer is a concept technology that aims to help you improve your game just by playing. Developed as a bachelor thesis by designer Thomas Mayer, it uses a pair of Playstation CL-eye cameras, a computer, and an HD projector to show stats and shot visualizations on the playing surface in real time. There are dashboards for each player that contain all kinds of performance data, but the real trick is the ball tracking, which lets it show not only where the ball has been, but where it should go next.
Read the article here

Tech goes to high fashion church at Apple and Vogue’s Met exhibit

Apple and Vogue’s Costume Institute exhibit has finally arrived, and with it comes the clearest expression of two companies’ combined vision. Titled Manus x Machina: Fashion in the Age of Technology, the theme for this year’s exhibit — as well as last night’s extravagant Met Gala — celebrates the marriage between human handiwork and machine in fashion and design. But more than that, the exhibit represents a desire to fuse the two brands’ power and influence to make for something greater than what each could accomplish alone.
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