Since Gutenberg unveiled his greatest invention, the printing press, mass dissemination of information has been shared via 2D interfaces – from books to newspapers, websites, and smartphones. The value of progressing to 3D spatial solutions is exponential because where 2D info is locked in a box, accessible only when we go to it, XR solutions are able to manifest all around us.
Today, while technology is finally capable of supporting mass adoption of 3D spatial solutions, the main point holding back mass adoption from happening now is usability, specifically UX/UI. How do we push XR through a Blackberry-to-iPhone metamorphosis? How do we make internally and externally immersive computing environments intuitive- relatable, usable, and scalable? How do we understand and adapt to a paradigm shift comparable to going from a tricycle to a Star Wars speeder bike?
When most people think of an “Innovation Lab,” computer science or engineering usually comes to mind. While those disciplines are important – they’ve done a great job building a solid, stable and scalable foundation for Extended Reality (XR), Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning (ML) and other emerging Industry 4.0 technology- we at Th3rd Coast Digital Solutions believe a key factor in expediting the rate of Digital Transformation is USABILITY.
Pretty much everyone agrees XR is cool, but to leveraging its capabilities to really change the world, evolve how we work, increase our productivity and efficiency, experiences must be intuitive and practical. From etched stone tablets all the way to iPads, humans have exchanged information via 2D interfaces for thousands of years. Adding another dimension to the mix becomes a monumental paradigm shift, especially as the ‘digi-verse’ expands exponentially all around us (the great Carl Sagan explains a similar concept when imagining the 4th dimension).
Emily Webb is a senior in the graphic design program at Kendall College of Art & Design of Ferris State University (KCAD). Since before even being able to speak, she’s made anything she could get her hands on. At age 13, the world of design opened up to her after picking up Photoshop. An overall creator, she extends her craft to graphic design, illustration, storytelling, and video. She combines these disciplines to not just create stunning work, but a truly unique experience with story always at the forefront.
Madison Princinsky is a junior graphic design student at Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University (KCAD). Driven by a love for uncovering the core of a problem, Madison crafts design solutions equally functional and beautiful. Solutions with grit and attitude. With a heart of service, she designs to make people feel seen, and their voices heard. The biblical command, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit” (Philippians 2:3–4) does not burden her profession; it defines it.
Summer Michmerhuizen is a junior at Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State (KCAD) and is majoring in Graphic Design. She has a passion for creative design and a desire to explore new ways of thinking and making. The nature of her work is simple yet professional with a fun twist that sets it apart from others. Her inspiration is drawn from the people around her and the exploration of new destinations. A love for the beach, the tv show Friends, Peace Tea, and traveling are only some of the things that make her into the designer that she is today.
Liam Shine is a junior at Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State (KCAD) and is majoring in Illustration. He strongly values curiosity, creativity, and learning new things. He was first introduced into digital 3-D art and XR (Extended Reality) through FlexLab—KCAD’s on-campus 3-D printing and fabrication lab. His satisfaction in art and design comes from the reaction of viewers and the thrill of making something no one has ever seen before. He is excited to further explore new avenues for creation as an intern in TH3 KCAD XR LAB.