Video Where What You See is What You Get

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The Looxcie wearable camcorder sports the line “Share life as you live it”. A wearable camcorder resembling an oversized Bluetooth, the Looxcie device interfaces with your mobile phone to capture, record, and share video clips – from the mundane day to day to the surprising moments you didn’t know were going to happen. By using your cell phone as the viewfinder, Looxcie records up to five continuous hours of video or hundred of Looxcie Moments, where at the push of a button the device captures the last thirty seconds of action, similar to how hunting rifles snap a photo the moment before the trigger is squeezed.

From a social aspect, the opportunities are endless. New parents would no longer trip over the furniture for the camera as their child takes his first steps. And you will no longer have to decide between reaching for the camera to see the final at bat or actually watching the game. Sentimental memories aside, the technology is reminiscent of the 2004 Robin Williams move The Final Cut where children are implanted with audio and video recorders and upon an individual’s death, people make ‘rememories’ or highlight reels of the person’s life for their family and friends to remember them by. The ease by which users may capture thirty second clips and share them through their cell phones and the connected social networks is inviting but also could lead to misinterpretation of people’s activities and lives. How many thirty second clips does it take to understand someone’s personality? More importantly, how many thirty second clips does it take to paint a misguided picture?

What can we learn from this?

Ethics of spontaneous and short video sharing aside, the UX field can take a lot from this technology. Where the Flip camcorders allow mobile and spontaneous video recording, it still requires the intentional plan to record and capture an environment. Provide this wearable system to users during a usability test and the ‘aha’ moments might be captured with that much more ease. During a shadowing study or a journal study you might capture not only what the users discuss and write down but what they are actually looking at. Even with researchers themselves, the quick soundbites often used in findings presentations might be captured with greater ease and efficiency. While I still don’t see people walking the streets with camcorders strapped to their heads, the same was said about Bluetooth and wireless phones years ago. Once the initial hurdle of this awkward device is overcome, what uses would you have for immediate and handsfree capturing of the little moments in your life? Either professional or personal.

Top Image: The Final Cut, 2004

David Farkas

David is an interaction(s) designer working in the online and mobile realm. He focuses on the relation between the digital and the physical. Usability, goal oriented design, and consistency are key.

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