It's News To Me

SXSW and Social Organization for the Creative Class

March 19, 2015          

Episode Summary

Is South by Southwest the big tent tech revival for the American creative class? As knowledge workers make their annual pilgrimage to Austin this week to participate in a giant festival filled with the latest in technology, music and film, it's worth asking if conferences like this one are the 21st century's communities of engagement.

As traditional organizations, civil and religious alike, like Lions Club International and Rotary International, churches, and even unions lose membership, there is a need for new structures to organize and engage people in meaningful ways, especially those in the creative class.

Witness the rise of the conference, the unconference, the meetup and the ascendancy of the professional group as one of the primary binding elements of our society — at least for those involved in the information economy. In this episode of The Digital Life, we discuss this phenomenon examined through the lens of the popular SXSW festival.

It's News To Me

Apple Watch Fever

March 10, 2015          

Episode Summary

At Apple's big unveiling on Monday, we got a better look at the Apple Watch, what the company hopes will be its next category-busting tech product. At the event, Apple also announced HBO NOW, fulfilling the dreams of cord-cutters everywhere; ResearchKit, the open source health study software; and the next generation of its CarPlay system, rolling out with 40 new autos next year. In this episode of The Digital Life, we consider whether Apple has jumped the shark with its new Watch, the implications of CarPlay for the rolling tech boxes that used to be just transportation, and the promise of ResearchKit for the medical research community.

Bull Session

Designing Bio-Inspired Technology

March 5, 2015          

Episode Summary

The age of bio-inspired technology is upon us. Whether it's DNA as data storage, transparent displays based on mollusk shells, or surveillance robots modeled after swarming bees, the possibilities abound for natural systems to serve as patterns for the products of the future.

In this episode of The Digital Life, we consider the evolution of the designer as technologist and engineer in conjunction with the ever expanding importance of bio-inspired technologies.

It's News To Me

The Frontiers of Digital Health Diagnostics

February 26, 2015          

Episode Summary

Will 2015 be a breakout year for digital health testing? It's still a little early to tell, but the news this week was good for advocates of mHealth and personalized medicine.

23andMe received FDA approval to provide screening for Bloom Syndrome, a rare gene disorder indicative of a predisposition to develop cancer. At Columbia University, research engineers developed an inexpensive HIV test that can be conducted using a smartphone. And, "tricorder" mHealth darling Scanadu entered the testing phase for its Scanaflo iPhone-ready urinalysis strip.

In this episode of The Digital Life, we discuss these latest achievements in digital health diagnostics and explore the future of mHealth.

It's News To Me

Smart Clothing, Drone Regs, and Apple’s Electric Car

February 19, 2015          

Episode Summary

In this episode of The Digital Life we discuss recent news in emerging technology.

Big fashion houses and experimental designers alike are flocking to smart clothing as the latest expression of wearable technology. Sensors combined with online connectivity, are enabling information flow directly from our clothing — whether it's measuring heart rate for sport, flexibility for rehabilitation, or Tweets for fun.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has proposed new regulations for commercial drone flights.

And Apple might be taking on Tesla and General Motors by venturing into one of the most complex product areas: the electric car.

Join us as we dig into these topics from a UX and design perspective.