Joe Alterio's blog on illustration, comix, design, animation, and other bouts of total awesomeness.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Obey the Orb

From Wired, a piece about The Orb , a "glanceable" (chuckle) ambient information object that, instead of shouting data at you, is more passive in it's presentation.

"That's the power of "ambient information," which tries to combat data overload by moving information off computer screens and into the world around us. The Orb was originally sold as a tool for monitoring financial portfolios. You could set it to shine a serene sky blue when your stocks were going up or pulse an alarming red when they were tanking. Studies showed that people were two to three times more likely to actively manage their investments, selling off deadbeat stocks and buying better-performing ones, when they used the Orb. This is the psychological paradox of ambient information: We're more likely to act on a subtle but continuously present message than an intermittent one we're forced to stare at."

Great idea, cool object, and what a way to see the power of numbers when it comes to energy saving. But what I really love is that diagram above, from The Orb's site.

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