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Very random thoughts on a variety of interactive media topics. Broadly looking at experience design, brand, digital consumer strategies, innovation and a fair dollop of user-facing technology. I'm Experience Director at EMC Consulting and you can also find me masquerading as @poleydee on Twitter.

In a spin with Internet Explorer 9 and BMW

By now, you will have seen why some of us at EMC Consulting have been a bit quiet recently, it’s because we’ve been working on something that has been secret up until today – the launch of Internet Explorer 9 beta.

The launch happened in San Francisco and London tonight with Gorillaz headlining in London, during which were revealed a number of showcase websites to show how capable IE9 is at rendering the next generation of web technology: HTML5, CSS3 and Javascript 5 (ECMASCript 5), DOM L2 and L3, SVG and so on…

What does that all mean? It means that we can now do a whole bunch of stuff with websites that we could only previously do with browser plug-ins, but using just a standard web browser. It also means that we can write one set of code to work across a wide variety of browsers, that does a bunch of stuff that was previously only the domain of plug-in technologies like Silverlight and Flash.

In actual fact, rather like this – which is what we’ve been working on for a few weeks:

The Joy Defines the Future experience The Joy Defines the Future experience








Go give it a try at http://joydefinesthefuture.com – but beware, you’re going to need a pretty new browser like IE9 from http://beautyoftheweb.co.uk (other browsers are available!)

What is it?

Well, we experimented with the world of the ‘car configurator’ – the online tool where you add bits to cars, and look around them in detail to see what they’ll look like. Instead of playing with a real car, we worked with BMW to create a showcase for their BMW Vision EfficientDynamics concept car. The eco future of sports cars.

What this simple proof of concept has in it, is all the things that you would need to do a modern, rich experience car configurator. It’s got it all: 3D models, a soundtrack, dynamic switching on and off of elements… and even a change from day to night to help put the car in a context familiar to the user – and amazingly, it’s ALL DONE IN HTML.

It’s easy to forget this fact when we’re so used to plug-ins, but the level of sheer craft and skill from our designers and interface developers achieves, we would argue, an even better experience than those plug-ins have offered to date.

What did we discover in this experiment? HTML5, Javascript 5 and all those technical bits I mentioned earlier are amazingly capable of delivering things that we previously only would have dreamed of doing in a browser.

Ok, that’s it for now as we all have to go to the launch party. Once the launch has calmed down a little we’ll blog a bit more about how we did it, and some of the more design and technical aspects, but for now, go download IE9 beta at http://www.beautyoftheweb.co.uk/ and go visit http://joydefinesthefuture.com/

Who are we?

EMC Consulting is the consulting division of EMC. We employ a wide range of skills from the datacenter, right up to the user experience, to create compelling, meaningful and useful systems and interfaces that drive businesses, but also delight consumers. As well as doing the design and technical development for a number of great brands like Virgin Atlantic, Barlcaycard and Tesco, we’ve always been a strong Microsoft partner, and therefore had great opportunities to work on the technology of the future to help establish how it makes its way into mainstream customer experiences and our clients’ architectures.

The Credits:

It wouldn’t be right not to thank those involved and so I’ll do that before we go on to write anything else about this project – and the first thanks absolutely have to go to BMW whose help, support and cooperation, and of course, their beautiful and amazing car has made this all possible.

Thanks also for the explicit support of Microsoft, for letting us have the opportunity to play with the future, and of course the browser itself allowing us to do more than we imagined possible in terms of performance and smoothness of experience. The spirit of partnership, openness and collaboration throughout have been the kind of Microsoft I have seen emerging over the last few years that is exemplary of how the big software players should be working with partners.

And of course to the team who crafted this thing – entirely by hand I might add – in a demonstration of craft that I haven’t seen since the early days of the web, to produce something that if you told me about it in even 2001, I would have said was impossible…

So those thanks have to go to:

  • Rob Brown – Head of our '”iDev” team – the HTML and JS guru who really stretched what was possible and shaped this whole thing with his amazing skills
  • Matthew Ratcliffe – Lead 3D artist at EMC Consulting – What can I say? To create such a beautiful 3D model, with amazing textures, true to life reflections and dynamic elements. Awesome.
  • Rupert Jones  Art Director at EMC Consulting – genius visuals, incredible patience, and getting to grips with the unique requirements of a prestige brand like BMW in a very short space of time.
  • Tom Hopkins – Managing Consultant at EMC Consulting – Without Tom this project never would have happened. Supreme dedication to the cause.
  • Mark Peters – Project Manager at EMC Consulting – keeping us all on track and keeping us all honest
  • Stephen Fulljames – iDev at EMC Consulting – for diving in at the last moment when Rob went on holiday to get the project over the line
  • Almost finally – a massive thanks has to go to Jane at Hear No Evil (http://hearnoevil.tv) for helping out with the incredibly effective and beautiful sound track(s)
  • And although we already thanked BMW – Brian and Hans-Peter you’ve been awesome!
Published Wednesday, September 15, 2010 7:05 PM by Paul.Dawson

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everton daley said:

where can i this car to buy

July 6, 2012 10:46 PM

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About Paul.Dawson

I started working in 'new media' when it was new... around 1996, doing websites for people like DHL and Cellnet (remember them?) as well as CD-Roms for people like Dorling Kindersley. I joined Conchango in 1999 because I was fed up with the conflicts and overlaps between the companies that we tended to partner with to deliver these things. Usually it was a tech company and a marketing agency. Neither had the user's needs in mind, and both were trying hard to take business away from each other. So at Conchango I saw the opportunity to create an integrated team, who as a result of all being on the same side, and following good user centred design process, delivered better stuff for both our clients and their customers. Bizarrely, now that we have teams who truly understand all these aspects of projects, we now partner very well with both tech and creative companies! So we built an interactive media team who do design, branding and user experience, and since 2006 have consistently been rated best in Europe at this by Forrester Research. Which was nice! Since then I've worked on digital strategy and innovation for companies like Virgin Atlantic, Barclays, Tesco and other great clients as part of EMC Consulting. Now I spend a lot of time evangelising to customers and at conferences, about what EMC Consulting do in the field of Customer and Brand Experience, as well as still working for real clients on real projects. The final thing I do is look out for what new user-facing technologies will be relevant to us, our customers and consumesrs. I help shape how we adopt them, and how we apply them, and how we build the skills we need to be the best at them.

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