Festo's robot designers have a way of making me rediculously happy. The wide shot of the atrium at about 1:20 just made me goofy.
How to design systems that become experiences by transcending mere utility and usability.
In a world mediated through computing, our everyday lives are increasingly affected by complex and invisible systems. Some of these are algorithmic trades on the stock market, others are search results for information, movies, or a date. These systems often aspire to transparency, usability, and efficiency. Playful systems take a different approach, bringing the systems to the foreground as games, stories, narratives, and visualizations. Playful systems embrace complexity rather than conceal it, and seek to delight, not disappear.
The MIT Media Lab Playful Systems research group.
The most important innovation in the NBA in recent years is a camera-tracking system, known as SportVU, that records every movement on the floor and spits it back at its front-office keepers as a byzantine series of geometric coordinates. Fifteen NBA teams have purchased the cameras, which cost about $100,000 per year, from STATS LLC...
The Raptors' analytics team wrote insanely complex code that turned all those X-Y coordinates from every second of every recorded game into playable video files. The code can recognize everything - when a pick-and-roll occurred, where it occurred, whether the pick actually hit a defender, and the position of all 10 players on the floor as the play unfolded. The team also factored in the individual skill set of every NBA player, so the program understands that Chris Paul is much more dangerous from midrange than Rajon Rondo, and that Roy Hibbert is taller than Al Horford.
As always, there is commentary on Hacker News.