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In the tradition of Who Owns the Future? and The Second Machine Age, an MIT Media Lab scientist imagines how everyday objects can intuit our needs and improve our lives.
We are now standing at the precipice of the next transformative development: the Internet of Things. Soon, connected technology will be embedded in hundreds of everyday objects we already use: our cars, wallets, watches, umbrellas, even our trash cans. These objects will respond to our needs, come to know us, and learn to think on our behalf. David Rose calls these devices—which are just beginning to creep into the marketplace—Enchanted Objects.
Some believe the future will look like more of the same—more smartphones, tablets, screens embedded in every conceivable surface. Rose has a different vision: technology that atomizes, combining itself with the objects that make up the very fabric of daily living. Such technology will be woven into the background of our environment, enhancing human relationships and channeling desires for omniscience, long life, and creative expression. The enchanted objects of fairy tales and science fiction will enter real life.
Groundbreaking, timely, and provocative, Enchanted Objects is a blueprint for a better future, where efficient solutions come hand in hand with technology that delights our senses. It is essential reading for designers, technologists, entrepreneurs, business leaders, and anyone who wishes to understand the future and stay relevant in the Internet of Things.
About the Author
David Rose is an award-winning entrepreneur and instructor at the MIT Media Lab, specializing in how digital information interfaces with the physical environment. A former CEO at Vitality, he founded Ambient Devices, which pioneered technology to embed Internet information in everyday objects like lamps, mirrors, and umbrellas. CEO of Ditto Labs, Rose has been featured in The New York Times and parodied on The Colbert Report. A frequent speaker at conferences and for corporations, he lives in Brookline, Massachusetts, with his wife and two children. Enchanted Objects is his first book.
"David Rose has written a spectacular book. While glass slabs have already entered every nook and cranny of our lives, Rose paints a much more compelling future where we are deeply engaged with enchanted objects. Rose’s vision of human computer interaction is more exciting and persuasive than the current norm and this brilliant book gives us a road map for how to get there. While I’ll continue to invest in many things that improve our glass slab world, I believe that the future is enchanted objects."
— Brad Feld, Managing Director at Foundry Group
“Beyond the internet of things we find the internet of enchanted objects, a medium designed for pre-attentive cognition, conveying information subliminally and delightfully. I highly recommend this book. It is filled with evocative examples that will influence our imagination and help us move beyond our fixation on the screen.”
— John Seely Brown,former chief scientist, Xerox, and visiting scholar at the University ofSouthern California
"David Rose's vision for enchanted objects and their platforms is spot on. With this book, he offers innovators and businesses a convincing guide for success in this space."
— Glenn Lurie, President, Emerging Enterprises and Partnerships, AT&T Mobility
“David Rose does not predict. He extrapolates the future from personal experience and technical fluency. His balance between a romantic humanism and scientific destiny is unique. His storytelling is intellectually rich, laced with history and never pedantic. Enchanted Objects is a truly enlightening read.”
— Nicholas Negroponte, Professor and Co-Founder, MIT Media Lab; author of Being Digital; a founder of WiReD Magazine
"Delightful. . . . In the scrum of talking heads wrestling to gain control of the narrative behind the Internet of Things, Mr. Rose is an engaging, plain-spoken guide."
"Rose touches something significant to most of us... A fine tour d’horizon of innovative enchantment and its ground rules and responsibilities."
"In the fully realized, enchanted world of David Rose...objects that, once instructed, require no human prompting to function, already exist. They're part of the Internet of Things, an ethereal interconnection of gadgets and human desires that...will pervade our lives in the very near future."