— Google (@Google) April 19, 2017
AI Experiments is live.
— Google (@Google) November 16, 2016
There’s a bunch of amazing experiments on the site; but this one below is the one I spend the most time with during its early development phase.
Honestly; I never felt more out of my depth on a project than at the beginning of this one. Sat in the kickoffs with Alex, Kyle and Yotam who were deep in the weeds talking about t-SNE, dimensionality reduction, hi-dimensional space, convolutional neural networks, and supervised vs un-supervised learning. Was a full-on nose-bleed, crash course, in ML. But so worth it. Do not fear this stuff. It’s a different world to start; but after a few weeks it starts to take. So please enjoy….
The Infinite Drum Machine
— Google (@Google) November 18, 2016
Sounds are complex and vary widely. This experiment uses machine learning to organize thousands of everyday sounds. The computer wasn’t given any descriptions or tags – only the audio. Using a technique called t-SNE, the computer placed similar sounds closer together. You can use the map to explore neighborhoods of similar sounds and even make beats using the drum sequencer.
Here’s the explainer video:
For an extra sneak peak into the development process; here’s a video showing an earlier prototype. This one has around ~40k short samples from Freesound! For the final version we licensed ~17k.
This is one of the last projects I started working on in New York, so it’s great to see it out in the real world. Mad props to Alex, Catherine, Manny, Yotam, Eric, Jonas, Kyle, Gene and bunch of other very smart people.
And yea…. what Kyle said.
— Kyle McDonald (@kcimc) November 16, 2016
AI Experiments website:
Most of the stuff I work on is confidential so I don’t get to share it publicly—but my last project could hardly be more visible. I’m not going to write lots about it as there’s already plenty of coverage out there. All I wanted to say is that it’s the meatiest (and most rewarding) thing I’ve ever tackled. We kicked the project off in January 2015 with ten people in a room sketching ideas. By the end of August we had over 200+ engineers, designers, writers, product managers, and marketeers preparing to flip the switches on over 30+ product updates. As well as the product updates and a ton of guidelines and toolkits – we also made this Google, Evolved video, a Google Doodle for the occasion, and shared the thinking on the Official Google Blog.
Everything went live on September 1st 2015.
Bonus: we also broke down the process + thinking in much more detail over on the Google Design Blog post If you’re into how things get made you should definitely take time to read it. You’ll get a better understanding of how the process worked, why the system & framework were designed to hold together, and what we wanted to reflect in the brand by making Google more accessible and useful to our users—wherever they may encounter it.
Here’s a little teaser.
Early this year, designers from all across the company, including Creative Lab and the Material Design team, convened in New York for an intense, week-long design sprint. We drafted a brief that identified four challenges we wanted to address:
- A scalable mark that could convey the feeling of the full logotype in constrained spaces.
- The incorporation of dynamic, intelligent motion that responded to users at all stages of an interaction.
- A systematic approach to branding in our products to provide consistency in people’s daily encounters with Google.
- A refinement of what makes us Googley, combining the best of the brand our users know and love with thoughtful consideration for how their needs are changing.
It was a huge team effort. Hope you like the work!
I recently did a lunchtime session with the lovely people at Radio 1. Here’s the highlights:
CAMPAIGNS / IDEAS
Fred Pretty: The Hidden Concert Series
Mishmash of tech on display here. Somehow it all comes together beautifully.
Nike: Take Mokum
Another nice combination of Facebook and real world events.
Smart use of Google Maps and Facebook. Create a car and a map. Race with friends.
Volkswagen: Side Assist Office
Take a product feature and dramatise it. Smart branded utility from VW.
McDonalds: Interactive Pong
Nice campaign using HTML5 and geo-location instead of an app. Simple redemption too.
Heineken: Bluetooth Bottle Opener
A connected bottle opener that invites your friends over for a beer.
New site for Google+ with a very cool custom hack off the Maps API.
So many things I like I about this. Gorgeous HTML5 website, leading to branded content in Spotify and iTunes.
INNOVATION / TECHNIQUES
X-Men First Class – NFC
Posterscope, Proxama, O2 and Nokia team up. The possibilities are HUGE!
Daft Punk – Anatomy of a Mashup
The entire piece is composed from the latest HTML5 and CSS3 technology (canvas, audio, transforms & transitions).
MIT Mood Meter
Isobar have already teamed up with MIT to look at applications for brands.
Kinect + Android avatar. Love it.
Object tracking non-QR AR for iPhone with multiple media (geo-located).
Paper Record Player
A paper record player wedding invitation.
Kinect Live Music Performance
Chris Vik uses Kinect with Ableton to control sound samples and produce an amazing live music performance.
YooToob Interactive Youtube Music Machine
Just use your keyboard. It’s the Youtube interactive music machine.
The Wheels Of Steel
Turntables in your browser with HTML5/CSS/JS and some Flash. Needs a kickass browser and machine. http://wheelsofsteel.net/
This man is an owner of an electronics store in Stockholm. He swallowed a custom-made wireless soundsystem. People then request a song over the internet.
Borg & McEnroe Play Doubles on YouTube
Separately, they are alright. But when played simultaneously, they interact perfectly.
The Verbalizer by Breakfast NY
Enhancing Google Voice Search. Smart. Fast. Etc.
Face Projection Mapping
Responsive projection mapping where everything is triggered by his face. Up close and personal.
Richti-Areal Augmented Reality Installation
iPad controlled projection mapping.
Video Time Machine
Handpicked popular culture from 1860 – 2011.
The idea is simple: pick a city, and every 30 seconds it will take you to a random place and show you the Google StreetView image. Each view is not important. What’s interesting is if you leave it running and occasionally glance at it. You might recognise some views in some cities, otherwise there’s a lot of mundanity: suburbs, motorways, traffic signs. These are the grain of the city and vary wildly. /via Dentsu Blog.
Really smart use of the Storify platform to continue the conversation.
Phil Collins: Requirements
The site geolocates you, and updates the album artwork depending on the weather. London. 18º. No Jacket required.
Nice vid made from 1000s of photos.
Swede Mason steps up culture smash.
Three-Toed Sloth Crossing The Road In Costa Rica (Sloth’s Perspective)
What’s not to love?
Cat In Tanks