While reading about reflective qualities of the interface, it made me think of not only The Reflective Practitioner, but the way it was conveyed seemed to me that this type of interface quality is not only to strike a conversation with the artifact, but also to make us think and ask questions of the world around us (and the examples of net art and digital art presented were pretty epic). Anyways, I started looking for an example of an “artish” augmented reality type of design to comment on, and I found this:

This augmented reality pet was pretty interesting from the fact that the pet actually has pretty realistic behaviors, and that I could have a pet without actually having it in my house (as I am allergic to pet dander). But that was pretty much the only thing I liked about it (along with all of the comments of it on youtube – comments), as I didn’t like that I had to constantly keep adding semacode markers to allow the dog to move and behave in a larger amount of space. That didn’t seem like something a real dog would need in order to move around (and also, it makes me think that this would eventually be monetized, and the amount of cards one would have to buy would be epic, potentially leading to a large amount of waste when this whim of an interaction is over with), along with having an owner put this much effort in to having a pet move. While having a device that overlays the dog in real life is part of AR, I would have liked to see this interaction pushed further – incorporate our glasses, or other types of “reflective” surfaces in the environment to bring the dog to other environments. After all, a dog pretty much comes and goes wherever it pleases, and having a dog that sat still until you prodded it didn’t make me engaged with it at all.

I guess the only part of this interaction that would make me reflective would be the fact that this would not want me to get a pet, because it would serve as a reminder of all the effort I would need to put into the care of the alive being. If this was the intent of this interaction, then it certainly has succeeded, as it made me think (and then the authors would also have another exemplar of an interface to put in their mixed reality category, although I didn’t think that lumping mixed reality and digital art as reflective interfaces meant the same thing to me – they are pretty much different, in my eyes, as the mixed reality apps usually are meant to place more information in our environment to help us make the choices we need to make, whereas digital art helps us to push our understanding of the world around us and what we can do with it. This app, even though it may push developers to change the world, doesn’t really make me reflective in the same way the authors intended, so I guess I am looking for others’ thoughts here).

If you haven’t seen “text rain” before, it’s pretty darn cool, and is the kind of cool stuff I usually keep around in my head for off the wall concepts.