Adrian David Cheok describes his recent and intriguing projects about mixed reality and networked objects, some of them focusing on human-animal interaction. He show new facilities within human media spaces supporting embodied interaction between humans, animals, and computation both socially and physically, with the aim of novel interactive communication and entertainment.
For the Seoul Digital Forum 2012 which will occur in May 2012, I was asked some questions about the topics of the conference. The questions and my answers are below.
1. What does ‘coexistence’ mean to you in this digital era?
Recently the world has rapidly accelerated in communication speed, traffic, and devices and we have now arrived into a hyperconnected world. We now have immediate and fully accessible communication between people, between cultures and races, between humans and machines, and between machines and machines. This hyperconnectivity will bring about radical
developments in every aspect of human lives in the form of new kinds of symbioses between humans and computers, new ways of communication between people, and new forms of social organization and interaction. Thus hyperconnectivity has brought about a global coexistence between people and people, between people and machines, and between machines and machines.
2. Which technology do you think has made the biggest contribution to our ‘humanness’ (based on your understanding/conceptualisation of humanness)?
Hyperconnectivity has made a revolution in humanness by breaking down the boundaries of both time and space. Humans, animals, the environment, and gadgets are brought together anywhere and at anytime. The impact on society is enormous and we are only beginning to see the resulting massive changes in humanity. Hyperconnectivity has increasing led to less importance to physical place, such as developed or developing world, or urban or rural distinctions.
3. What do you think is the missing piece that will complete the technology puzzle? What kind of technology will be most needed in our future?
Currently it is difficult to reproduce a true sense of presence through the internet. In traditional human communications, body gestures, the physical environment, and touch can often more deeply explain the intended mind and provide intrinsic information, which makes for a more rich communication exchange. Furthermore, we often communicate emotionally using all the senses simultaneously, including sight, touch, sound, but also through taste and smell, such as sharing a meal together or cooking for a partner. We thus need to create fundamentally new forms of media to connect humans in the physical world and through the virtual world, not just in the transmission of information and verbal communication, but through meaning and nonverbal communication to increase the sense of telexistence using all the senses. This will allow more opportunities for people to make meaningful exchanges using media in both the physical and virtual world.
4. How do you feel about speaking at SDF2012? What are your expectations?
The program is exciting and highly relevant and addressing important issues for our present and future, with the input of world experts. I expect this to be produce new changes in both industry, government and academia.
5. What/who do you want to see/meet the most in Seoul (or among the speakers of SDF2012 – please refer to the attached speaker line-up)?
I am looking forward to meet many leading visionaries and I also hope to have discussions with passionate general attendees especially young people.
6. What kinds of technologies realize the ‘reality-virtuality coexistence’ in our daily life?
The world has become hyperconnected. The Internet and web application are are available instantly and anywhere. People and the environment can communicate with each other instantly. Combined with almost unlimited data on the cloud and social media we are seeing a process of hyperconnectivity which effectively merges the physical reality with digital data.
7. Where is this zeitgeist heading and how will they shape our future?
The hyperconnected world will extend to encompass more of our senses and feelings. This feeling communication will extend beyond humans into the physical environment, gadgets, and machines. In the ubiquitous environment that our world is developing into, there is great potential for our homes, cars, personal devices, gadgets, and workspace, to communicate with us in all of our human senses, and in non verbal and emotional forms. We could envision social networks extending beyond humans to an emotional communication between humans, their environment, and their personal objects.
8. How to make AR/MR become more humanized and thus sustainable?
To develop such a humanized communication system, there are fundamental, theoretical issues that must be addressed as well as technical challenges such as inventing new smell and taste sensors and actuators to extend augmented reality to all of our senses
Physical presence takes a major role and it should dive into a new dimension of cutting edge technologies offering improvements to ordinary day-to-day feelings and experiences. I aim to develop new technologies related to multimodal sensing and actuation to give the user more definition in their experience in the co-space environment. Visual, Auditory, Haptic, (Olfactory) Smell, and (Gustatory) Taste are the five sensors that humans use for environmental sensing, and emotional feeling communication. In addition to traditional communication through telephone and video-conferencing, the use of smell, and taste communication will enable a new paradigm of tele-communication. It is a field, which still presents great technical challenges which can lead to early technical breakthrough results.
Based on these inventions, I believe such a multisensory telecommunication will allow new forms of collaboration and learning on a global scale. I am particularly interested in how children will grasp these technologies to make new innovation and value creation. I am thus in in the process of examining how to nurture and inspire young children to create new value propositions that will benefit their individual selves, communities and countries. In the 21st century the democratization of communication tools may allow emerging markets to make creative leaps into new business and industry. We can view young children in developing countries as creative innovators and ambassadors of new technologies, rather than passive end-users consumers. Thus in this aim, I am creating design applications and workshops with the use of new media technologies for children in local schools.
I had the pleasure of being invited invited to Malaysia by the Malaysian government investment arm and part of the visit was attending the Malaysian F1 Grand Prix. At the F1 I met Malaysia’s modern founder and Prime Minister for many years, Dr. Mahathir Mohamad. I found Dr. Mahathir to be a most pleasant and gentle man. I could feel he had a deep and solid thinking.
I was introduced to Dr. Mahathir as the person who “invented chicken hugging on the internet” (related to my previous work Poultry Internet). Dr Dr. Mahathir actually asked me about poultry internet, and I was happy to explain. I guess it was the first and maybe the only time he would talk about internet chicken hugging.
As I watched the F1 it actually came to my mind that Dr. Mahathir basically made all this happen, he modernized the whole country. But I am also very impressed that he let the country go into basically full democracy. Malaysia reformed into an open democracy with the people free to express their voices.
I had the pleasure to enjoy the F1 in Malaysia close up, but what I left with was a more deep impression, I felt free to be myself in Malaysia, it is a open and free society.
Everything in Life can be learnt from Star Wars
Stream 2012 Ignite: Adrian Cheok, Mixed Reality Lab
What’s an Ignite talk? Five minutes on stage to talk about an idea, an interest or a passion. You get 20 slides that rotate automatically after 15 seconds. It’s fun, it’s fast, and the format forces you to really think about what you want to say.
Adrian Cheok speaks at WPP’s Stream “Unconference” in Phuket, Thailand
Here is a general summary of Stream from the home page of Stream Asia:
We are pleased to announce that our second Stream Asia event will take place 8 – 11 March, 2012, in Phuket, Thailand.
Hosted by Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO of WPP, and Yossi Vardi, internet investor and founder of Kinnernet, Stream Asia will bring together around 300 top creatives, entrepreneurs, investors and corporate leaders who come together to learn from, and contribute to, the freshest thinking on the future of technology and communications.Click here to see the current attendee list.
The format of the event follows the ‘un-conference’ model with limited keynote speeches and PowerPoint presentations; instead participants are invited to take part in discussions on the latest industry topics in communications and technology. Click here to see a list of previous discussions.
Attendance is by invitation only. For more information on Stream Asia please email The Stream Team.
I flew from Narita airport on Thursday, and arrived a little bit late in the night time. But luckily I was in time for the Gadgethon. As I am more used to technical conferences, I thought that this would be a session of people showing their own demos. However it was mainly showing the latest and coolest gadgets that people have found. A kind of “hot topics”. The coolest think I thought was not anything digital at all, it was purely analog. It was a very cool, geeky, and kind of secret agent type jacket where it has hidden pockets for putting all your gadgets in, even iPad (http://www.scottevest.com/). The cool thing is when you are travelling, it is basically like having another carry on bag which you wear. I am sure the FAA will count these as baggage if many people start wearing them, but for now it is a very cool air travel hack. Thanks to Gary Shainberg (@garyshainberg) for showing this.
The next day was the start of the discussions. There were about 8 discussions sessions at any one time, so it was difficult to know what to attend, as almost all of them looked very interesting. One of my favorite sessions was about social media and revolution 2.0 which was chaired by Thomas Crampton (@thomascrampton).
However the greatest highlight was in having impromptu and serendipitous discussions with the amazing people attending the event, and also some of my favorite people who were also attending. One of my serindipitous moments was that I happened to bring a book along with me to read on the plane which was a gift to me from Gino Yu (@phusikoi) more than 5 years ago, which I never had time to read before. I was reading the book on the plane and thinking of Gino. Gino coincidentally happened to be one of the first persons I bumped into at Stream. After many years we had a long and deep discussion together.
Another highlight was happening to sit together with all the Ogilvy & Mather people at the dinner. It was one of those lucky chances that serendipitously happen in life. If I knew the table was all Ogilvy & Mather people I might have chosen to sit somewhere else, in case I was interrupting or bothering some company discussion. As it was, I sat together, and we had amazing discussions and I realized they were very interested in smell and taste media themselves!
In the night time there was the Ignite sessions. I gave a presentation on next generation of experience communication on the internet and some of my work on touch, taste, and smell media. It was kind of thrilling to give the presentation because the slides automatically flipped over every 15 seconds. It was a great experience, and it really helps to sharpen ones mind and presentation style. I really enjoyed to listen to the other Ignite presentations. One that I remember the most was about things to do after turning 40, because this was very relevant to me having just turned 40 🙂
Another serendipitous moment came very late in the night at about 3am. I was in the lobby area doing late night computing, and started chatting to Olivia Choong (@oliviachoong) and Judith Clegg (@judithclegg). Olivia was from Singapore, but I felt she was quite a radical and rebel person, which I really liked. I found she was really interested in Poultry Internet also. We talked about some internet business ideas, and even meditation.
Judith is Founder & CEO of innovation agency Takeout. Founder and The Glasshouse network a 100 million dollar early stage investment fund. She had so many wise thoughts and insights and I discussed with her some internet business ideas. The next day I was able to have lunch with her and talk get a lot of great advice from her. That is the great thing about Stream, being able to learn from many wise and talented people such as Judith.
The next day was also full of great discussions followed by a final dinner and party. I had to catch a bus at 7am on Sunday morning to the airport, but I realized I was still chatting to people, as well as dancing Michael Jackson together (there was an Xbox set up with the Michael Jackson dancing game). I only had time to shower, pack, and get on the bus before catching my flight. Thank you to Ella Weston (@ellaweston) Director of WPP Stream and all the organizers of Stream for a fantastic and amazing event.
ARE 2012 1st Keynote Speaker Announced: Adrian David Cheok Inventor of “Krazy” Augmented Reality!
Posted on Mar 09 in ARE2012 by Ori
The line up of luminary speakers to keynote at ARE 2012, the world’s largest augmented reality event, will blow your mind.
The first revealed is Adrian David Cheok, Professor at Keio University, Graduate School of Media Design, in Tokyo Japan, as well as a Young Global Leader at World Economic Forum.
Dr. Cheok has been a hero of mine in pushing the envelop of augmented reality. He will join an amazing group of keynote speakers in previous years.
Adrian has been a champion of the idea that Augmented Reality is more than just about the visual sense, but has to include all the senses. Over the years, he’s been working hard to prove his idea and created many prototypes of augmented reality systems that involve the other senses.
To warm you up, check out his Hug Accentuator.
I can’t wait to see his Kissinger system in action.
(Hint: it’s not about the legendary statesman.)
Dr. Adrian David Cheok also created the first real world Pac Man game. When he wanted to create an exciting augmented reality game, he chose to remake the first video game to ever introduce a character – the legendary Pac Man. Cheok literally stepped into Pacman’s shoes in this first-person-shooter-like real world game.
Make sure to register for ARE 2012 before the early bird discount expires on March 21st.
Here’s an excerpt from Adrian’s illustrious career so far:
Adrian David Cheok was the Founder and Director of the Mixed Reality Lab, Singapore. and previously worked in real-time systems, soft computing, and embedded computing in Mitsubishi Electric Research Labs, Japan.
Mr. Cheok has been working on research covering mixed reality, human-computer interfaces, wearable computers and ubiquitous computing, fuzzy systems, embedded systems, power electronics. He has successfully obtained funding for externally funded projects in the area of wearable computers and mixed reality from Nike, National Oilwell Varco, Defense Science Technology Agency, Ministry of Communications and Arts, National Arts Council, Singapore Science Center, Hougang Primary School. The research output has included numerous high quality academic journal papers, research awards, keynote speeches, international exhibitions, numerous government demonstrations including to the President and Prime Minister of Singapore, broadcast television worldwide broadcasts on his research (such as CNN/CNBC/ABC/Discovery/National Geographic etc.), and hundreds of international press media articles.
In addition, Mr. Cheok has been a keynote and invited speaker at numerous international conferences and events. He was invited to exhibit for two years in the Ars Electronica Museum of the Future, launching in the Ars Electronica Festival 2003. His works “Human Pacman”, “Magic Land”, and “Metazoa Ludens”, were each selected as one of the worlds top inventions by Wired and invited to be exhibited in Wired NextFest 2005 and 2007. More…
Synthetic Reality: The Science and Applications of Virtual, Mixed, and Augmented Reality
The Khazanah Megatrends Forum theme of “Reclaiming the Commons: Collaborating and Competing in the New Economic Order” reflects the interpretation of the times we live in today and aims to release a wealth of discussion on a variety of issues affecting the investment community.