Tuesday, 15 December 2009

HR monitor rant

Where the hell is the future of ANT+ ?
Where's the open standard, not owned and squirreled away by Garmin?

Where's the fiercesomely forward thinking Ergo that links wirelessly an iPhone to a HR meter? Where's the ConceptIII iPhone app?

Where's the brass monkey balls to get a damned HR monitor out to the public?

Fitbit is just a hint of what tech could actually do.

And then it might actually be damned useful, rather than just damned late.

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Augmented Reality and dance

Lightstage - need to email to see what's happening.
Project Natal is in concept, a one sided version of this.

Presumably the next stage is to make Natal comprehend multiple angles. Rig a few cameras up in different corners of the room, and then all sidess are seen.

Mocap for the 21st century.

Head cam for the 21st century: http://gizmodo.com/5320375/christian-bale-rant-victim-is-the-man-behind-the-canon-eos-5d-mark-ii-helmet


This can capture a dance, both in video, but also in 3 Dimensional space, showing your body movements (at least at the simple level, but presumably start to get more refined and higher resolution).

- Your dance
- Your teacher's dance
- A dance at an event
- A private lesson
- At a dance hall

Recall - you have the dance captured - you can go over fine detail whenever, wherever
Improve - you can problem solve spins, movements, timing (care to have the 3d visually pulse with colour in time with the music beat/rhythm/instrument)
Learn - See a routine and slow it down - at a much finer level and smoother when at non-1x speeds.

Could you have 2 streams of data - a HD or VGA version, and then along that the feed from what the Natal webcam receives as input/ what gets crunched and uses as output. If you could collect both at the same time, close enough, you could even overlay them - in in effect add motion capture skeletons, avatars overlaid or whathave you.

Whether or not this is Real Time (RT) - in effect you get to a wirestick model of people, with avatar possibilities.

A move library, where every move could smoothly be linked to every other one?
Think this needs pictures.

iPhone App 2 Salsa learning

If Mental Case got n-sided cards (so you could have a card for footwork, card for key points, card for what it linked from and linked to in a routine (or what it could link to/from). That'd be useful - Drew's already talking about audio, and possibly video.

With video, you could link snippets of a routine - literally splice out each move, to then allow (you'd have to line up the camera for the start and end positions :/) you to mix and mtch moves to make a routine, or video a routine, splice, then remember it/ what your routine form different classes could be like joined together in various ways (so the video pieces being say x number of bars long rather than just 2-4).

iPhone App 1 Salsa

An example of what Google Maps can do - mapping extreme sports locations on a map.
But a pin in a map doesn't help so much, as a rank by wind/distance/quality of sites, knowing where you are and how far it is to drive to the locations - all info you can gather and push to the user.

Same with salsa - there are several static lists of events and classes, that get updated at various speeds - but you've got to search through most - a list of addressses.

With decent data on each venue - when where, level, how much, who by, parking info, how long, what style etc
You could start to move away from a nasty excel spreadsheet, and more towards a more useful UI for a person looking to go and have a dance, or a dance lesson, whereever, whenever.

Friday, 19 June 2009

Your new phone, and how to improve your dancing

I think a few of you might want to go get an iPhone 3GS.

Or maybe not. Stephen Fry would recommend them - "for the moment however, no one can deny that with the iPhone 3GS the gold standard has been set."

This post is to highlight the possible benefits, if you had one, and you wanted to use it in conjunction with your salsa dancing.

So the question on a salsero's or salsera's lips could be - is it useful for Salsa? Well possibly. The only drawback is the price. Can you afford it? And can you afford to take it out dancing? If you can answer yes to both of those then you have certain benefits:

The video quality on the iPhone 3GS is VGA 640x480 30 frames per second - better than small youtube video quality. It does autofocus photographs, auto-light balance, and handles panning and motion fairly well (with the option to correct for motion shakiness afterwards through software on a computer). It's not Flip quality, but it does seem to suffere less distortion when panning it seems.

What does that look like? Here's a quick video, recording a youtube video to show you rough quality. Bear in mind that youtube actually compresses the actual recorded video.

You do a lesson, and then record the final runthrough demonstration, and then you've got that reminder video stored on your phone. You can share it, you can edit it, whatever.

There is great power to be able to archive lesson patterns, or insights, thoughts, or even just video your friends for feedback/encouragement/to show them how good they are. I know that Anthony at addicted2salsa has mentioned the iPhone before in several contexts (Shazam app to identify music, photos, storing a2s videos! Being his precious...)

Storing a back catalogue of audio & video podcasts

There is a decent amount of salsa on iTunes - e.g. Addicted2Salsa's HD video podcast - link to subscribe in iTunes here. That looks great on the iPhone, and iPod Touch.

I'll add the unlikely salsero link if I can find it. (Edit - this one and this one I think).

It does decent GPS based Google Maps guidance to an event, with the option to get a TomTom application and charger/holder soon. Info here -

This is so cool, I'd watch the Engadget review here In particular, this video. You won't get lost.

The best camera, is the one you have with you. There are better picture taking phones out there. But, bear in mind, that the iPhone is the most popular handset model to upload pictures to Flickr for example - it's so easy to email, post to Flickr, MMS, or blog about pictures you've taken. It does good pictures, for a 3Megapixel camera. No camera flash here, but it's good.

Email, SMS
No more waiting, you can be being productive whilst you wait for your friends to arrive, and you can keep in touch with them
There will be more reasons, but for now, these are the ones off the top of my head!
For some more ideas about the video, have a look at this gallery here

Guided tour of the iPhone 3GS

More salsa posts here and some previous thoughts on an iPhone app.

Saturday, 13 June 2009

Gary Vee needs an iPhone app

Seriously - wine buying needs to get much improved, and the G2/ iPhone 3GS could help with this.

Google has the tech to warp a distorted image to a straight image (used in their book scanning project, but a company could do something similar, as wine bottles pretty much have a simimlar shape where the label is, and they usually have straight edges, or at least the text is in horizontal lines...)

So what do you need?
Which shop? ID the location with the GPS / select supermarket, then a list of the supermarkets.

Which wines? Select what you want - price range, type (white red bubbly dessert)
Then the painful database bit - trying to display some wines the shop has. Now the supermarkets now this detail, but they won't likely let no what's on the shelves - but the churn isn't going to be that big - many supermarkets will have similar stock. Once the base stock for a small, medium and large supermarket is identified (crowd source!) then it's just updates to stock, and price changes/ offers.

Wish Gluck had been round for this kind of thing. Now this would be very mucheasier for supermarkets, but their concern is linking easily a review of a wine to their stock - it very easily identifies how good the wines they stock are, and also value for money.

In relation to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Cluetrain_Manifesto -

Thursday, 11 June 2009

iPhone 3GS - Game changer for the blind and the nagationally challenged?

Listening to TWiT Live's repeat showing of MacBreak Weekly, episode 144 - they joked about the feature of maps and a digital compass.

But what if you took 3D audio, and then knowing the direction of the phone, and then a map, you could provide a touch screen app that would give street names around you in 3D audio space as well as visually. You could get it to give info about upcoming road junctions.

For the blind, they could plug in their iPhone, and then if they wanted to find a store, go into Voice control Google search, then route a route, then follow audio directions, along with a guide dog/walking cane.

For those with sight, but not a good sense of direction and orienteering, it could also be used to train people up on the skills needed.

They joked if you could put glasses on and make it across town without looking anytime. But that's what a blind person I guess does every day...

Wonder where you can find up to date info on tech for the blind.