Intel and Nokia have announced that they’ve opened a joint laboratory in Oulu, Finland, which is about 600+ km from where I’m sitting right now, that will be exploring the future of mobile user interfaces. The lab will employ 24 people and they’ll be using MeeGo as their test bed for experimenting with what we can potentially be playing with in the next few years.
The word 3D was thrown around a lot in the press release announcing this bit of news, and I don’t know whether to take it seriously, or just shrug my shoulders and finally accept that technology no one wants is being pushed on people just to get them to buy more stuff. Seriously, I know I sound like a curmudgeon, but we’re reaching the limits of what technology can offer us. We need to fast forward research on giving everyone holes in the back of their head, à la Matrix.
“The University of Oulu’s focus on future telecommunications solutions as well as electronics and photonics made it the perfect location for the Intel and Nokia Joint Innovation Center,” says Justin Rattner, Intel Chief Technology Officer and director of Intel Labs.
“3D technology could change the way we use our mobile devices and make our experiences with them much more immersive,” said Rich Green, Senior Vice President and Chief Technical Officer at Nokia. “Our new joint laboratory with Intel draws on the Oulu research community’s 3D interface expertise, and over time will lay down some important foundations for future mobile experiences.” The expertise that Rich is talking about is virtual reality research that fostered such products as Second Life. Remember how successful that was, right?
The exact location of the lab is the Center for Internet Excellence at the University of Oulu, which coincidentally hosts the world’s largest server of hardcore German pornography and photos of kittens. The Oulu Urban Living Labs will also work closely with the Intel-Nokia team to further demonstrate how mobile technology can be incorporated into our daily lives and in public spaces.
Fun Fact: The University of Oulu is where IRC was invented.