From CS160 User Interfaces Fa06
The use of digital cameras for the purpose of picture taking is becoming more commonplace than ever before. The modern digital camera allows its users to preview their pictures instantaneously, share and touch up their pictures electronically and store more images on-board than a traditional film-based camera ever could. However, a key element missing from digital photography is the personal touch.
Photographs and photo albums tell stories. Stories about people, their lives and those in their lives. In a way, the photograph is universal to cultures around the world. If there were a way to combine the versatility of the digital format with the personality of traditional film-based photo prints, one would provide a richer and more wholesome experience to the photo-viewing user. I believe one can achieve this versatility by combining the digital photography experience with the use of the Anoto digital pen.
The personal value of photographs are raised when the photographer chooses to annotate the photograph with personal messages, notes and memories related to that image (as is often done on the reverse side of a film-based print). However, these hand-written annotations cannot currently be recorded or duplicated electronically, making it hard to archive and distribute the personal touch associated with a print.
With the Anoto pen, however, anyone can now write short notes, messages or descriptions related to a picture and associate it with a digital image - all in his or her handwriting, preserving the uniqueness of every picture taken.
Target user group
Though beneficial to any digital photographer, it would be interesting to see if members of an older generation whom might be more used to film-based prints of photographs find this useful. Thus, specifically investigating the feedback from a user group of about 40+ years of age would be most valuable.
Problem Context & Forces
The rise in popularity of digital cameras has not been followed by the decline in the popularity of photo prints. In fact, it is estimated that 35 billion digital photos will be printed this year and 40 billion by 2008 (Lyra Research). Undoubtedly then, there is personal value accorded to a physical, tangible copy of a photograph (be it digital or film-based). Though there exist several software packages that allow for digital photograph annotation (and even some automation of that annotation), none were found to consider the personal element to annotation.
A solution to provide handwritten annotations to digital photograph collections could be set up by providing a simple Anoto pen and paper interface, a digital photograph viewer and an annotation tracker. As the user loads a digital image in the viewer, she can start writing the personal note and then mark off an image number (to assist the note-image association) on the same page of the Anoto paper. When the user is done completing the annotations, she can then sync the pen with my tracking application. The tracking application can export the notes as images to publishing or printing applications (such as Apple’s iPhoto) that can then be used to print enhanced, annotated and valuable photographs or photo books!
Available but not scanned.