more empirical evidence on making sense

Brain effects are communicative goods. A recent study found common effects among reading and seeing actions: Participants observed actions and read phrases relating to foot, hand, or mouth actions. In the premotor cortex of the left hemisphere, a clear congruence was found between effector-specific activations of visually presented actions and of actions described by literal … Continue reading more empirical evidence on making sense

presence for you

While I consider these presence management services more useful, I like the way availabot relates information to atoms: Rather than showing up on your screen, it shows availability as a physical object in the world. That means that you can move the puppet out of view when you don’t want to be distracted, watch out … Continue reading presence for you

sensory ecology

The PicturePhone was a spectacular failure in the U.S. in the early 1970s. Many factors contributed to the PicturePhone’s flop. It required significant up-front equipment expenditure coordinated across users. It was expensive to use. It was bulky. It highly constrained the bodily position of users: compared to the PicturePhone, the fixed line phone of that … Continue reading sensory ecology

text messaging is unnatural

Recent research indicates that human visual processing capabilities have shaped text. Letters in 96 non-logographic writing systems, Chinese characters, and natural scenes all have similar distributions of topological configurations. The human visual system evolved to process natural scenes. Writing systems from around the world and throughout the history of written language appear to be well-matched … Continue reading text messaging is unnatural

spineless gene contributes to smell, taste, and color vision

As an FCC bureaucrat, I’m intrigued by a recent discovery about the spineless gene. I’m trying to understand better the demand for communications services, particularly across sensory modes. A leading researcher on the spineless gene in fruit flies explained: “Spineless plays a key role in the antenna and maxillary palp, the two major olfactory organs … Continue reading spineless gene contributes to smell, taste, and color vision