Technology doesn’t only change our life, it’s the idea and imagination of humans that build the world we want to and consequently brings changes. So change isn’t possible without the influence of creativity; the power of the human mind is unfathomable.
The seed of each technological innovation is born in a creative human mind with the desire to make human life simpler, which is the actual purpose of technology. If any technological innovation fails, it’s the failure of the execution of the idea at times. Ideas which have no impact on human life and don’t transform the way we live simpler fail.
Someone gets inconvenience or observes others getting inconvenience, motivates one to use technology to create a product/service that could make things easier. This is how most products/services got their existence in the world.
Google engineer Johnny Lee was frustrated with the limitations of his mobile phone to provide directions to his destination in the absence of GPRS signals. Whenever he went inside a building and lost GPRS signals his phone couldn’t provide the details of his location and he failed to understand his location. His phone was useless when he visited big malls as it failed to show him directions.
So Lee started to develop a location sensing system that could help us give directions when needed the most (indoors). This innovation is termed as Tango. I adore Google as a company; it has been doing some interesting things apart from improving its flagship product as we know the search engine though the real truth is, in spite of being a technological revolutionary company, it’s the world’s largest advertising company which, in fact, is its value proposition. It has collaborated various technologies to create innovative products. Next in the making is location sensing system called Tango.
Do you remember, no one really believed we needed GPRS till people started using it and realized how effortless it could make things in our life? Now, we cannot even imagine using a phone without a GPRS system. Tango too might get widely accepted by people. It has the potential of becoming the must-have smartphone feature.
Tango uses sensors, image processing, and computer vision which will make our phones comprehend space and motion in a much better way. The core technologies used by Tango are motion tracking, area learning, and depth sensing.
How will Tango change things for us?
Tango will make our phones map the area around us. Our phones will learn and remember the area we are in. This will help us detect our distance from the wall, or an object or how far we are from the floor. We will understand where we are moving in a three-dimensional space. Tango will do this with accuracy and that too without the need of GPRS, Bluetooth or Wi-Fi.
Now our phone will start interacting with the surroundings with Tango.
How will Tango enabled products make our life simpler?
Suppose you are shopping for a table and you have a Tango enabled app and you choose a particular table to buy. You wouldn’t know how it looks in your drawing room. With Tango enabled app you can see which style suits your drawing room and if the size fits in the space, it would let you plop 3-D images to see how it looks. Tango enabled app can help you measure dimensions of an object without a measuring tape.
Tango game called Phantogeist allows aliens dive at you from your surrounding like under the floor or behind the walls. American Museum of Natural History has a Tango app that lets you put dinosaurs around the house and read facts about the dinosaur exhibited in the museum.
We are now merging the virtual world with the real world. You need to experience how Tango can better your life by discovering more about your surroundings something that even GPRS doesn’t do for us while now, we know Tango does more than the GPRS. So once people understand this benefit, most wouldn’t want to buy a phone without Tango.
First Tango device will be released by Lenovo; its called Phab2 Pro.
Challenges that Tango faces:
It’s not going to be an easy idea to implement as Tango needs a specialized software and hardware. It will also need to have some great apps to prove that it’s an essential feature. So how Tango is used in apps to better our life will determine its success. Lenovo’s Phab2 Pro will have 50 Tango apps that will be available on Google Play store.
Phones will need special equipments like depth sensor using infrared signals measures distance between points in space, fisheye lens camera that enables wide angel viewing, and motion tracking features.
But, this will increase the heftiness of the phone and lead to higher costs. It will require more battery power. Heat would be generated and it has to be dissipated. Phone makers should be given processors that combine various Tango functions on a single chip, this will combat the above challenges. Tango should be made use on other devices too to make it popular and users be friendly to put their hands on it.
Human mind inherently craves for simplicity and so, uncomplicated user experiences which can be simplified through the way of technology putting hands on time and again to analyse what works and what not. Companies are designing products that can simplify our lives. Donald Norman thus spoke about User Experience, User Centered Design which improves our interface with products by bridging technology and people.
A few books about the user experience and design by Donald Norman are The Design of Everyday Things, Emotional Design: Why we love everyday things?, and The Design of Future Things.
Creative minds use technology to facilitate our lives. So we should embrace technology with a human touch for the sake of ease. All said nothing can replace the human touch.