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What it looks to be as if being an ipad on a stick on wheels

What it looks to be as if being an ipad on a stick on wheels

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We like experimenting with geeky instruments. All in the title of science of course…

How about sitting on a seaside in Thailand and taking piece in convention in Stockholm by distant-controlling an ipad on a stick on wheels? Feels like a relaxing experiment, doesn’t it? How many geek functions is that?


And hello, I correct occur to be on an island in Thailand correct now, and there’s this frosty event Lean Tribe Gathering occurring at the Spotify Stockholm space of job, and I just not too prolonged ago purchased a double. I observed a form of issues driving around the space of job a pair of months ago, and it suddenly popped to the tip of my have to-try-at some point listing.

So what became the speculation? I’ve heard that it’s best likely an experiment while you maintain a speculation. In any other case it’s correct having fun with round, and I wouldn’t deserve to be accused of that might well I?

The convention became an night of lightning talks and begin voice (= colossal room with 1000’s mingling and diminutive groups of informal conversations, like a cocktail secure together underneath the guise of a convention). Will I hear and discover the presentations? Will I be in a neighborhood to roll round and freely take hang of part in the delivery voice? Will I feel like I’m if truth be told there?

So my speculation became: “I can fully take hang of part in this convention the utilization of a double”.

So how did it work out?

It labored! The speculation became falsified, unfortunately, then all over again it became silent if truth be told frosty! I sat on the seaside attain a restaurant with authorized connectivity, pulled out my ipad, logged on to my double in Stockholm, and commenced driving round and talking to of us. Geek heaven!

On my own on a glum seaside because it received rather gradual. +6 hrs time distinction.

I became fully impressed, but furthermore a miniature bit disappointed, at the equivalent time. Impressed that I felt if truth be told cowl at the convention, but a miniature bit disappointed that I felt more like an observer & comic relief than a staunch participant.

Observing the lightning talks

The controls were rather clumsy, and my web connection became rather shaky. However I might well secure round ravishing, slowly, and I became in a neighborhood to secure it to the entrance of the room correct by the stage.

For the lightning talks I might well discover and hear the speakers ravishing (they had mics), and I might well secure out about 1/2 of the slides (reckoning on colors ordinary, font measurement, etc). All in all I received the presenter’s message. However I didn’t need a double for that, somebody will maintain keep aside a computer on a chair and connected me by skill of skype/hangout. However, it became fine in say to “turn my head” every so recurrently, to note the speaker’s actions, or discover the audience and the room.

Mingling in the delivery voice

The delivery voice piece became if truth be told attention-grabbing. Using round this… thing…. and feeling like I’m if truth be told there. Unique.

On the opposite hand, despite the proven truth that it became relaxing and frosty, in educate it didn’t if truth be told work that successfully in consequence of the background chatter. I might well roll up to a crew of of us, but I might well best likely bag about 20% of what became being talked about, in consequence of the entire other dialogue occurring round me. Also, the ipad speakers are too primitive for this more or much less insist, of us might well best likely hear me narrate in the event that they curved down and keep aside their head if truth be told shut. So I felt more like an observer than a participant.


At one point I joined a smaller crew (four of us) sitting rather extra off, a long way from the most fundamental chatter.  That labored perfectly, I might well join the crew and if truth be told be piece of the conversation.

REAL telepresence

The frosty thing is that I became if truth be told there. I indicate that thing rolling round became ME! On one hand I became like “wow, excellent, I teleported to Stockholm and shapeshifted alongside the manner!”. A factual out-of-body ride. On the opposite I hand I became like “HELP! I’m caught internal this thing! My body has modified into and ipad on a stick on wheels!”.

I had the determined sensation of “Wow, so that is what it’s like being a inebriated tetraplegic with unhealthy hearing and a primitive utter.”

Tetraplegic, because I’m successfully stupefied from the neck down – the double doesn’t even maintain legs or hands. I might well discover and hear, and I might well roll round like in a wheelchair. However slowly and fastidiously, and I every so often wished assistance when issues received in the manner. Customarily I received assistance, even when I didn’t need it, which felt both authorized and unhealthy at the equivalent time. Step by step of us observed that I might well secure round in point of fact well myself, with some persistence. I can’t turn my head, but I can turn my entire vehicle from facet to facet to search out what’s occurring. After all, I don’t know what it’s if truth be told like to be a tetraplegic but I direct it’s doubtlessly one thing like this.

Under the impact of alcohol, because that thing sways rather generally to shield in steadiness, and every so often bumps into issues or trips on diminutive objects and falls flat on it’s face (came about best likely once, then all over again it felt contaminated).

Corrupt hearing and primitive utter, in consequence of the background noise in combination with my rather miniature microphone and speaker. I generally couldn’t note the conversation occurring, and of us had to lean in shut to hear what I became asserting.

One other attention-grabbing thing. Customarily when I rolled up to a crew of of us, they stopped talking and stared at me as a change. As if I became some more or much less object (and maybe I became…. or maybe not? Any philosophers on the market?). A entire bunch smiles and laughs of course, and the occasional vexed taken aback as somebody realized that “hello, there’s a person internal that thing!”. In some cases I felt more like a comic relief than a factual convention participant. While listening in on a conversation (successfully, trying…) I every so often observed of us staring at me, they generally couldn’t discover that I became staring correct support at them. A distinctive feeling of check contact and, successfully, not.

Despite the proven truth that, I admit, it became rather relaxing to every so often bump into of us and discover them convey in shock at being accosted by an ipad on a stick on wheels, with a grinning guy on the cowl. Even earned me a kiss on the cheek once. Or as a minimum that’s what I think she became doing. It wasn’t a slap as a minimum, I don’t think.

I requested one guy for some coffee, and he nearly did, unless he realized what he became talking to :o)

Working out of batteries

Sadly the ipad on the double wasn’t fully charged from originate, so it started working low rather rapid. I didn’t deserve to disrupt the continued presentation, so I tweeted for serve, and somebody excellent plugged me in.


One day of a rupture, I logged off to secure it tag faster (which it didn’t). Then later, when logging in all over again, I chanced on myself standing a pair of meters a long way from the closest person. I wished to be unplugged so I might well transfer round! Heeeeelp! but no one might well hear me! Now what? I direct I might well tweet all over again, then all over again it might maybe probably well well take hang of a while for somebody to react.

Ah, I might well demonstrate a message on my cowl! However how? The app on my stay will best likely send the video circulation, i.e. my face on the digicam. I can’t secure it to demonstrate one thing else. Ah, I might well write an illustration! However darn, I’m sitting on a seaside in Thailand and no paper or pen nearby.

Then I realized that I had my computer with me (as backup solution). So I fired up textedit and wrote a message


I made the font colossal (as in overlaying the total cowl), and pointed my ipad cam at it. And moved it from facet to facet rather for assemble (inflicting the textual hiss material to pulsate). That labored! Of us at the convention observed the message rapid and unplugged me.

The charger didn’t work despite the proven truth that, so I became silent at about 10%. I figured I’d correct take hang of part as prolonged as I might well, and the battery would die when it died. That became furthermore a distinctive feeling, shimmering that at any 2nd I will “die”, my double will accelerate limp, and I’ll secure up support on the seaside in Thailand. Entire Matrix 2nd! I observed the battery counter accelerate decrease and decrease, and my minutes were numbered, so I had to secure primarily the most of it. Carpe Minutus! Resolve the minute!


  • Double is a supercool and engaging system, looks to be fine and takes very miniature voice.
  • Observing a presentation works
  • Having conversations in diminutive groups works, but not if there’s other conversations occurring nearby.
  • Inspiring round works, but slowly, and not with colossal thresholds or stairs.

Aspects I might treasure to maintain:

  • the potential to “tilt my head” upwards rather. I might well search for down at my wheel by skill of a nifty fold-down maintain (generous for navigating round chairs and such), but I couldn’t search for up, and the robot is terribly short even when fully extended, so generally I chanced on myself involuntarily staring at somebody’s chest as they talked to me. A bit awkward, especially with ladies….)
  • the potential to demonstrate a message or sketch, not correct my videocam & face the entire time.
  • the potential to trot myself in for charging, like the docking pads that lawnmower robots employ.
  • a louder speaker, for noisy environments
  • a directional mic that will seemingly be activated/deactivated, in cases the build I deserve to hear the person in entrance of me and ignore the background noise.

Oh, and When you’re going to sit down on a seaside in Thailand throughout the night, secure determined you maintain mosquito repellant. And don’t neglect the fingers! I if truth be told maintain like 30 mosquito bites on my fingers, I’ll doubtlessly secure dengue fever or one thing. However heck, every so often it’s crucial to secure sacrifices for science!

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