A variety of early applications were also built, including pinball, a photo browser and a video puzzle. As more applications were developed, the team saw the value of the surface computer beyond simply gaming and began to favor those applications that took advantage of the unique ability of Surface to recognize physical objects placed on the table. The team was also beginning to realize that surface computing could be applied to a number of different embodiments and form factors.
Over the next year, the team grew significantly, including the addition of Nigel Keam, initially software development lead and later architect for Surface, who was part of the development team eventually tasked with taking the product from prototype to a shipping product. Surface prototypes, functionality and applications were continually refined. More than 85 early prototypes were built for use by software developers, hardware developers and user researchers.
How does this interesting new interactive retail experience benefit
It certainly has the potential to break down barriers between people and technology and provide a more interesting interaction with digital content. Consider how ATMs changed how people got money from the bank. Surface has the potential to change the way people interact with everyday digital content.
More importantly, how could this possibly apply to the practice of
Again, I invite you to imagine the experience a client has when they visit your office. With more of their information moving to a digital format, I can see a device like this deployed in firm conference rooms where practitioners regularly meet with clients. Now before you get too excited, consider that initially these units will cost around $10,000, which for frugal-minded accountants may be completely out of the question. However, if you’re looking for a way to distinguish your firm and potentially bring significant publicity to your services and how they’re delivered, it’s not beyond the realm of possibility.
Surface Computing is part of Microsoft’s recently formed Productivity and Extended Consumer Experiences Group, run by Corporate Vice President Tom Gibbons, and is within the Entertainment & Devices division. According to Gibbons: “Our first partners come from the leisure, entertainment and retail industries, and Surface has the potential to span many other industries.”
So don’t be surprised when you read or hear about a Surface device deployed in a professional firm somewhere. I can imagine pulling up client documents by touch, rotating and enlarging them as you discuss their content with your client. And I can imagine your client dropping his/her credit card on the device to provide payment for your services or a required retainer. You may find this idea a little farfetched, but the possibility certainly exists.