I have recently commented that a bar code scanning phone can be a great user interface to click an offline hyperlink. Given mobile phones' ubiquity, many people see it as the new computation device that might even supplant personal computer. But an open issue remains, how can we input and output efficiently on such small device? The tiny display and the digit keypad still leave much to be desired. Below is several ideas I have come across over the years.
Rather than using a keyboard, just talk to your phone and have it talk back! Having worked on interactive voice response systems and speech recognition technology like VoiceXML myself, we know that users hate voice menu. Speech recognition suppose to improve its usability. But is it good enough?
Rapid Serial Visual Presentation
Would you like to read an article with a cellphone? How about a book? If you think this is too much to fit in a tiny display you may be interested in a technique called Rapid Serial Visual Presentation. The words are flashed rapidly on the screen one at a time. It best to see it in action in this video demo from BuddyBuzz. For the impatient, the real action starts around 2:50 into the video.
This is the idea I have drawn out in the Searchblog's comment. An URL is encoded as bar code. It can be printed and displayed in any location. One can point a cellphone equipped with a bar code scanner to it and have the web page fetched on the phone. The entire experience should be intuitive and seamless. Another commenter has pointed out that a similar technology caller paperclick is already available form NeoMedia, possibly by the way of pattern recognition of images taken from a camera phone.
Miniature Laser Projectors
R2-D2 has one. A projector would be great for showing details not possible on a small display. This Miniature Laser Projectors from Light Blue Optics is touted to be made for cell phones and PDAs. At 3.78 cubic inches with power consumption of 1.4W it certainly has a lot of potential, if not ready for the smallest of smallest cellphone yet.
Flexible paper thin roll up display like this one from Philips or these from E.INK? It would be really cool to use your cellphone to connect to Google map and have it displayed on a sheet the size of a map!
2006.02.18 comments -