Birthday Cards

I was over at my dad’s last night, doing a little pre-birthday celebration, and my little sister Emma gave me two of what are undoubtedly the coolest birthday cards I have ever received.

This first one, if you can’t tell, is me biking. She even got the sideburns right.

The second, is me snowboarding, and when she first gave it to me it came complete with a demonstration of how I could use this card to re-enact breaking my collar bone

One of the most impressive features of both cards is that they are interactive. Each of the little figures (of me) is attatched to a strip of paper (somewhat hard to make out in these images). The strips can then be fed through slits in the cards, similar to how old pop-up childrens books function. You can then move the figures around in the scene, creating a little puppet show of sorts. And when you’ve got a little sister to help move the pieces around, they really come to life.

Neat in and of itself, and especially interesting for someone with as much passion for interactive art as I have. It makes one think about the nature of interactive art, and reminds me of a story I once read in which a high school drawing teacher comes home after a day at work and sits down with his daughter. His daughter asks him what he did at work today, and when he replies that he spent the afternon teaching people how to draw she promptly responsds with “you mean they forgot?”.

These cards were a reminder that amongst the seemingly endless advances we’ve made in the realm of technology based interaction, computer interfaces, and simluated reality, sometime the simplest things can still have a profound impact.

Thanks Emma, I know I’ll be thinking about these cards again next time I have another interaction problem to solve.

bike card

board card