My favorite time of the year is spring as it turns into summer. Watching the new shoots on plants and trees gives me a huge amount of inspiration. It shows me how nature constantly reinvents itself and how hibernation and dormancy give it a chance to reinvigorate from the inside. How can we take a cue from nature and reinvigorate ourselves? I am the first to admit that I became addicted to my online world. I didn't holiday for 10 years. Then I realized that my family was not the Internet but the people around me from whom I had almost become estranged. Now I holiday at least three times per year, and I completely detach myself from the web, my desktop, and my mobile phone for at least three days per week. As a result, I am much more energized and excited to explore new avenues these days. So don't forget to inspire yourself both online and offline.
Here are two things for you to do today:
I was a judge for a massive brand's HTML5 contest last year. It shocked me how poor HTML5 game development was. When I saw Lux Ahoy being shared on Twitter as a great HTML5 game, I was dubious until I played it for myself. This has to be one of the best HTML5 games to date. It's one I will always remember as setting the stage for things to come.
This side-scrolling platform game, made with Adobe Flash technology, shows the level of quality that Flash offers. However, the credit for this extremely high-quality production goes to the creators of this project (listed above). The game play is perfect. It's as addictive as you'd hope for. The only other thing I would love to see in this game is new levels. Then I will be hooked for sure.
Nike pretty much pioneered the vertical scrolling HTML website with Nike Better World back in late 2010. Those scrolling websites have become far too commonplace since then, and they almost remind me of Flash intros from back in the day. With this Air Jordan site, Nike has ramped the scrolling effect up with very cool effects and shoe builds coming into the frame from all directions. It's great to see this idea evolve, and I wonder what the future holds for this method of navigation.
We've seen several experimental ideas using Kinect motion detection, but this one really stands out. This experimental game installation combines a touchless game play device and reactive objects. These types of real-world examples are becoming very exciting. If you think back to the original games of Pong, which I can remember playing on an old black-and-white TV many years ago, and compare that to where we are today with this example, Ponk, you have to wonder what experimental minds will bring to the table next.
I absolutely love this scrolling HTML site. It's been a while since I have seen such a simple idea come to life by infusing that trusty old ingredient: personality. Combine that with some gorgeous colors, and you have this wonderful result. It's often the simple ideas that bring us the best and most memorable results.
In this brilliant real-world example, Mercedes-Benz sends out a fleet of cars with its Active Parking Assist, and when the cars pass any empty parking spaces, they tweet them using GPS data, thus helping people find the empty spaces in downtown Stuttgart, Germany. Watch the video to find out how this worked.
This promotional site for Angry Birds Space cleverly uses the elements of the game: gravity and orbits. By using these elements within the navigation of the site, the creators have developed an innovative scrolling idea that takes you through space and Angry Birds' worlds in many different directions. This site is a joy to use and features many surprising twists and turns.
This great cross-platform site for Reebok asks you to use the search feature. When you type in phrases such as "I want to get fit" or "pink running shoes," the site serves up the content and sportswear without you having to know the often-tricky product names. This site also boasts impressive design and content management.
Case study: ksjdhi7.net/kaukofwa
Video demo: thefwa.com/site/kauko-remotely-controlled-design-caf-
Project by: hasan & partners & Perfect Fools & TWOFATBOYS
This is a great project to finish up with. How do you fancy taking control of chairs and tables in a café? On this site, you can remotely control chairs and tables in a café in Helsinki, Finland, in real time. It sounds crazy, but it looks like it was really fun. Take a look at the case study link and make sure you watch the video. It's very funny indeed, and it again demonstrates the power of real-world interactions with the web and mobile.
The "real world" and the "online world": Do these terms even exist anymore, or am I just showing my age? I guess this is just the world we live in now. It's not about online or offline. I still can't get over how immature this technology is, yet it is showing us so many exciting opportunities. My grandparents would never have believed a fax could be sent, let alone that the projects in this article could be created. Can we even comprehend what will be the norm in 100 years? Every one of us has the chance to change the future as we know it. Just let your imagination run wild.
Rob Ford founded The FWA Network in May 2000. Since then, the network has received more than 150 million visits. The FWA Network showcases projects that use cutting-edge technology for desktop, mobile, and offline experiences, together with showcases for photography as well as video. Rob is also the author of three best-selling books on web and mobile. Check out The FWA Network.