Thursday, January 14, 2010


Back in 1997, in the early days of the web, I became fascinated with exploring other GUI metaphors for how we interact and share information between our desktops and the nascent web. I designed INFOGARDEN while working and living in Japan.
The thought was to have use 2 povs (one ortho, the other top-down), each of which is then tailor made to see and interact with your information in a certin way.
without getting into too much detail, the top down view is a "slice" through the shape that contains your files. The "slice" occurs at a particular time, so you can roll back and see how the files have changed over time within a project container.
The ortho view which shows all 3 axis, uses all the things that we as humans are good at recognizing (shapes, colors, sizes) to help us organize and locate files and projects within the computer. The colors are a direct reflection of the type of files in the project container. Furthermore, the idea of "sharing on line" would involve "piping" one of the 3d project shapes to the "internet", with user defineable parameters to control permissions and access right on the "pipe".
Fast forward to 2010 and I still think that there needs to be better solutions to the way we interact with information....and in a age where we all accumulate GBs and TBs of data everyday, it becomes even more important to design something more intuitive to the way the human mind navigates and thinks.