Monday, April 6, 2015

iOS Games – A new(ish) subgenre of New Media

Techniques: iOS games are unlike video games on any other platform. When it first came out, many people tried to port familiar games to the iOS like platformers and dragonslayers, but it was apparent for the players and the developers that traditional games don’t usually work great with two thumbs on a touch screen. Because of this, an entirely new strain of games and controls has developed around the strengths of the platform.

Interface: iOS touchscreen (iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, between 4-10” screen) and their ten fingers. Multi-touch gestures are also frequently used. Multi-axis movement is also commonly exploited by picking up data from a gyroscope and accelerometer and using it in-game

Development: Since the release of the app store in 2008, different games have attempted various implementations of touch technology. When the app store began, many developers provided the users with the familiar A, B, start, select, up, down, left, right that are common to gaming controllers. But these controls are very difficult to use on a touch screen and have largely phased on in favor of more elegant, usually invisible controls that revolve around swiping, tapping, or movement of the phone itself

The Peak: I think that OS gaming has plateaued somewhat in popularity in the last few years since Angry Birds. The idea of motion and touch in gaming was very novel at first, but I think the honeymoon period of the technology has ended and is now experiencing the same expectations in design placed on traditional gaming styles.

Example: Rolando is a great iOS game that takes full advantage of the platform. As seen in the video below, you can move your protagonists as well as interact with the world itself with your fingers and various gestures.

Speculation: I think that as cameras, sensors, and the speed of iOS devices get better and better, we will be able to get rid of traditional consoles and instead of buying a Playstation console for example, you will buy the rights to have those games on your personal device, and perhaps pay for the drivers to be able to use a Playstation controller with your pocket device.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

The Gloves Project

The Gloves Project

The topic that I chose in representation of new media is The Gloves Project or musical gloves. These gloves are currently being developed by the singer and experimental musician Imogen Heap. The purpose of these gloves is to control different parameters of MIDI information through the movement of the arms and hands. What this actually means is a revolutionary way for artists to create music through dance and hand gestures. I believe we have not seen anything like this before and its going to open many doors to creativity.
These gloves are routed through a Digital Audio Workstation and they control many different parameters such as cutoff, resonance, pitch and different instruments through MIDI information. They are still being developed and the team behind this idea is working to improve the technologies and make it the best quality it could be. At the moment they count with sensor technology that converts the tightness of the grip and positioning of the hand to MIDI information that affects signal in many different ways.
This project is not yet out for consumers so we have not yet seen the impact that a product like this will have for music and art in general. We could speculate that something like this is going to revolutionize the way we make music and will be great for artists to make music while going with the "flow". We could go as far as thinking that music might not be the only thing these gloves are going to change. If we just go as far as looking at other art forms, this product could also control visuals in the same way. I believe a lot of people are going to want to incorporate this to their live sets and are going to get creative with in the way that they have always done it with every new technology that changes the game.