Digests » 358

this week's favorite

Augmented Reality

Let's start with a quick look at the terms. What is augmented reality and how does it differ from virtual reality and why are they so often mixed together? I'm gonna use the classical definition, according to which it is simply a matter of a different degree of mixing of the real and the virtual worlds. For example, the video game world where you rescue a beautiful princess while riding a tyrannosaurus is a virtual reality. The world where you go to the Walmart to buy a six-pack of beers to watch Netflix alone for the whole weekend is an objective reality. Augmented is somewhere in between.

Simple Systems Have Less Downtime

Ships contain simple systems that are easy to operate and easy to understand, which makes them easy to fix, which means they have less downtime. An important quality, considering that “downtime” for a ship could mean being stranded thousands of miles from help.

Why the GOV.UK Design System team changed the input type for numbers

Numbers are one of the most commonly asked for pieces of data, typically used in dates. We know from user research that some users prefer the large buttoned number keyboard (resembling a telephone keypad) for entering numbers on mobile. Until now, the GOV.UK Design System date input component used the HTML element <input type="number"> to provide this number keypad when a user enters dates.

On Voice Coding

I have had repetitive stress injury (RSI) flareups on and off for many years. I’ve kept them under control mostly through use of an Kinesis Advantage ergonomic keyboard that I’ve had for fifteen years. However, several months ago, I was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome and instructed to avoid typing if at all possible.

PDF text extraction

There is a common view that extracting text from a PDF document should not be too difficult. After all, the text is right there in front of our eyes and humans consume PDF content all the time with great success. Why would it be difficult to automatically extract the text data?