We loved this TED Talk from Jinha Lee — especially the exciting technologies that he demonstrated. The user interface is the location where the user meets the product, but is also fast becoming the space where the user and the product converge into one.
I just returned from a business trip to Japan.
As you would expect, the technology there is plentiful and cutting edge. What was even more interesting to me was that I found display screens everywhere I went. I encountered displays in all of the typical places — vending machines, trains, planes, cars, cameras, restaurants, elevators — as anyone would expect in the heart of Tokyo.
But even I was surprised when I headed to Kyoto for a restful weekend at a traditional Japanese hotel (ryokan). I removed my shoes, put on my kimono, opened the sliding door made of paper and bamboo and entered the sparse room with a pad on the floor posing as a “bed”. So far, so good.
Then I entered the bathroom. I realize the Japanese are obsessed with the high tech toilet, but even this through me for a loop.
It’s official. Display screens are everywhere!
Although Altia just released our new GUI editor, Altia Design 11, as a company insider I have been able to use the new release for quite a while. And I LOVE it.
Why you ask? Here’s just a few reasons.
- The dockable / movable panes (navigator, control code editor, etc.) enable me to customize my HMI development environment for maximum productivity.
- The new control code editor is a huge leap forward for creating control code, debugging it in place, troubleshooting issues for designs that I didn’t create, etc.
- The accessibility that the new code generation dialog brings with respect to target documentation is excellent. I can access an installed target’s release notes and overview documentation directly. This saves me time from having to wade through the start menu and finding docs buried 3-5 levels deep, especially when you have umpteen different targets installed. Woot!
- Speaking of code generation, I can now set the canvas size in the editor. What this allows me to do is to avoid having to manually select items or manually change the size of the editor window to match a desired target screen size. Double woot! Avoiding manual steps equals awesomeness because it means less room for human error and makes builds easily reproducible across different developer / designer / customer PCs.
- Overall, the controls and tools needed to create a new HMI from scratch are far more intuitive than previous versions of the editor. This new tool enables me to wade in to customer’s designs and not have to worry about accidentally screwing something up because the editor does something in an opaque or non-obvious way (like using the wrong deck object, etc.).
Ultimately, I am loving Altia Design 11 because it saves me time. Saving time means I can get more done, faster.
All these things make me a happy user!