Pranav Mistry got tired of fighting with his sister about whether they would watch Sports Center or Cartoon Network, so he designed a technology that allows people to watch different programs on the same television simultaneously.
Mistry, a researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was one of three innovators who spoke Wednesday morning during a session about technology at the 2010 Creativity World Forum. The speakers had a variety of experiences, but they shared a common practice: developing big ideas.
â€œWe should be designing the future and then living it,â€ Mistry told his audience at the Cox Convention Center Arena.
Mistry has helped develop many technologies that have the potential to transform people's daily lives. One of his current projects is developing a wearable interface that works like an invisible computer. People who wear the device, which includes a camera, mirror and projector, can use natural movements to interact with digital information in their physical surroundings. For example, Mistry can mimic taking a photo with his hands. The technology registers the action and takes a snapshot, which can be transferred to an interface on a nearby surface.
Another technology, called SPARSH, allows users to transfer information from a digital device to their body and then back to a digital device by touching the devices. Mistry gave his first live demonstration of the technology outside of a lab on Wednesday.
Speaker Robert Tercek said society is entering a â€œbrilliant new age,â€ where anyone can create ideas and share them worldwide. That requires people to think big â€” sometimes crazy big â€” said Tercek, a creative executive. He has worked for MTV and the Oprah Winfrey Network.
â€œIt's a process of trial and error, but some amazing things can happen,â€ Tercek said.
Speaker Andrew Zolli said creativity and technology have become an â€œeverybody activity.â€
Zolli, who is executive director of Pop! Tech, a global network for innovation, said it is important to push creativity in every part of society. However, he also warned that advanced technology could pose some challenges for future generations.
â€œWe lose something in a world in which everything is easy, because creativity isn't easy,â€ Zolli said.
Three Oklahoma students were recognized at the Creativity World Forum on Wednesday for their ideas of how to improve their schools and communities. The students won the Tom and Judy Love Creative Student Award. Their ideas were selected from among 130 entries statewide.
• Brian Powell, a junior at Yukon High School, was the overall grand-prize winner. He will receive a free first-year tuition waiver to a public college or university in Oklahoma. Powell devised a program called Bridging the Gap, which would pair teenagers with senior adults to build relationships and learn from one another.
• Chandni Raman, an eighth-grader at Oakdale Elementary School in Edmond, won a prize for students in grades seven through 12. Raman suggested developing chill zones at school that would serve as creative spaces for students and teachers to have fun while learning. She also won $4,500 for her classroom and $500 for herself.
• Lincoln Hawks, a fifth-grader at Northern Hills Elementary School in Edmond, won a prize for students in kindergarten through sixth grade. Hawks suggested students produce a monthly show about their lives, which would give them practice at filming, writing and editing, among other skills. Hawks won $4,500 for his classroom and $500 for himself.