/ We Love Paper and Pixels

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Websites, CD-Rom, iBook application, mobile application. Four years ago, I was really tired with a screen, and I would like to go back to paper, real, tangible media, but without forgetting what I've learned about interactivity. I tried to create a paper video game. It was at first an idea: "I like video games. I like pixels. I like paper, perhaps there is some solution to find." The first prototype, five years ago, I created a book who'd like to be a video game, and I put a lot of sensors inside the book. It’s a real book, a paper book. This book knows his position in space, recognizes North and South, has a speaker and a buzzer, has a notion of time, and can generate sound. So, there is sound [adjusting sound on laptop]. For example, you know Simon, the game. It is Simon on paper. Every page has a color and sound, and you have to reproduce the same melody. It's very hard. It works. Of course, there is a computer behind it with electricity. It is very complex.

This one, you have to push the paper to have information. We are able, with ——— sensitive ink, to hide and show some information on the paper, but just with ink. For example, this one, you have to find the North to have the good information. You are with the book, like that. We use a very small LED to have information. Yes, it's okay. The last one is how to play Pong with a book. You just have to move the page on a rhythm. You win. It's a real book. Of course, there is just one book like that. It's a very precious book. We use a very small sensor like that and an arduino card. It is very cheap. It is not very complex to do that. A small speaker. This one was an alcohol sensor. You have to be drunk. You have to blow on your book, and if you are not drunk enough, the book doesn't work. Very French. With a student, it works very well.

The first prototype, just with paper and its back. The book knows its position in space—left, right—and it is just with an arduino card. This book, just for a joke, works very well when it is very cold. It was here before the demonstration. It was in my freezer because it was a very curious book.

Another curious book is a book that disappears. A book that, when the first time you open it, you just have twenty minutes to read. Normally, you control the speed of the book when you read a book, but with this one, you don't have control of speed. It's like a video game. Ok, you start like that. I will accelerate. After five minutes, and after twenty minutes, it is completely finished, and you can't read it. It’s a very strange feeling when you start to read, and the book disappears like that.

Another one, very fast. Perhaps you remember the ——— ——- Boy from the 80s. We did it with exactly the same system but just with paper and with an arduino card. To the left, we have real paper, and we are able to hide and show a small duck in two seconds. You play like a video game, but it's not a screen, it's real paper. You have to find the key to open the door. It’s like a very 80s video game.

Another book, we tried to find a magical book. I like very well Harry Potter, newspaper, or book. I think the future will be like that. I prefer to have a real object, but the object is interactive, is able to send video, to play sound, but we have high hopes, so, of course, mobile phones or something like that, but, real paper.

This book is able to turn itself, the page. It's like a create-your-own-adventure book. You have to touch the circle, and the book will turn the page itself. After that, we created a small iPhone application, and the book is connected to the internet. It sends to the application which page is open, and the level of the game will be exactly the same as the paper. And, when you finish the level on the iPhone, the level changes and page turns. It is interesting for me because tangible media sends information to digital, and digital sends information back to the physical media. This one is just a prototype.

Another idea, it's this one. It was a reaction against QR code. As a designer, QR code is very strong, and there is a lot of QR code everywhere. For me, QR codes are the new zombies. They are everywhere. I created a book like that. It's about the first zombie movie from Romero, the "Night of the Living Dead". Big sell, this one. This book is a video game, and this is the trailer. Yeah, Apple said it's 17. It's not for children, because it's an Apple application. You have to unfold the book. It's a choose-your-own-adventure-book. It's a classical book, but you can turn the page left to right, right to left but, top to bottom, top to the left. It's a real video game. You have to pick up some items, like weapons of course, drugs, or something like that, to win the game. It's impossible to win. It's like a zombie movie. Everybody will die. You can download it. It's a free application. Every object we publish, the book you have to pay for but the application is free. It’s completely free. When it is finished, when you die, we switch the camera, and you see yourself on the screen and you are dead. It's very strange.

Another one, almost the same system, but just on paper. It's just a cube of paper, and you have I think six-hundred different possibilities of stories. This one is just a white one. Now we are creating a game with the same system. You are to unfold different...it's for children. There is no technology because every time we test before with paper...you know, I like so much computer and coding. But every time we start with paper, and sometimes it works very well with paper, and we say, “Ok. It's just a paper game. It's a board game. It’s perfect.”

Another idea, three or four years ago, my son was playing with my iPhone, but my iPhone was switched off. He was playing with it like that: a plane. “Vrrrmmmmm.” I said, "Oh, that's a very nice idea." I created a pirate board game. I created a big board game, and your mobile phone would be your pawn, or your figurine, or your boat. It's a very smart boat. You just have to put your mobile phone on a specific place, and there is a lot of censor, accelerometer, on the inside. You just have to move to the top or to the left, and the system knows you are to the right or to the left. The application has in memory a map, and of course it will show you exactly. It's like magical glasses. Of course, there is some fish, some elements, some dragons on the map.

A French publisher asked us, “Is it possible to create an atlas for children with exactly the same technology?” And we did. This book is a classical atlas, but if you have got the application, for example North America, you download the application, and you put the mobile phone to the top left. The application has a memory of the full map. You click on it, and now we are in Canada. Now, of course, you can click on the bear, and we improve information. You can have pictures, video, text, and a lot of information. Nice. Nice shot. What is important for me is if you have just the book, you can read it as a normal book. If you’ve got the application, you can play with the application without the book, but together it is another story. We test a lot with kids, and it works very well because they have to find new animals, new events, and it’s a very easy system to understand.

Another one, we found a very simple system with conductive ink and the possibility to connect and recognize some items when you, sorry, when you put a card or object on the screen. Every screen is capacitive now. It's like a electricity sensitive system. With silver ink that conducts electricity, we are able to recognize different cards and objects on the tablet without RFID or QR code, nothing, just paper. When you put the card, it's just abstract animation. It was a first prototype we did three years ago. It's just paper.

Okay. Last year we designed a small game for children with exactly the same system, but I used two holes on the card. When you put the card on the screen, they wake up, they speak, they speak a lot, and they speak together. It's a game like that. Thank you.

With exactly the same system, my students in Switzerland in Geneva designed a very nice story. It's "Once Upon a Tale", and it's an application on the iPad, a classical application. You can choose Cinderella, Red Little Cap, Puss In the Boots, and a lot of tales like that. Children like to repeat the same story and watch the same movies. They like it so much. The children, they have cards, and on each card, there are characters. There is a wolf, the witch, the seven dwarf, little red cap, and when you start a story like that, you just choose the tale with a card. When the Red Little Cap, for example, crosses the wolf, they can switch to the Three Little Pigs and the wolf switches to the Three Little Pigs, and the story continues because every tale like that uses the same pattern. It works, and it was very friendly to, you know, the question if I was a woman, if I was a dog, if I speak better english for example, my life would be different you know. It was the same story, and it works very very well. I think this project will be finished in a few months.

Another idea, it's this one. It's a book for children, but at the end of the book, there is a small hot air balloon on paper. You take your iPad and just put the balloon on the top of the screen. We use a shadow, and you have to continue your story, and you play the wind. (The balloon, you can test. I have everything here.) There’s an optical illusion because we use a small shadow. There is a connection between digital and tangible media. We use a tangible hot air balloon and a digital shadow, and together they work. They create a story, and the landscape will be different everytime.

Another idea...it’s a lot of ideas. Sometimes we publish it ...

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