What’s Next In Tech Meets The Public At Worlds Fair Nano

What’s Next In Tech Meets The Public At Worlds Fair Nano
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PSFK attended Worlds Fair Nano in Brooklyn to check out the future products and ideas on display and consider where they might go from here

PSFK
  • 22 september 2017

Last weekend, 8,000 people passed through the Brooklyn Expo Center over the course of a two-day event known as Worlds Fair Nano. The festival brought the latest tech, experimental food and talks from innovators across industries in front of an audience that doesn’t always get to see them, being outside the circuits of SXSW, TechCrunch Disrupt and other trade shows: the general public.

PROTOTYPES TODAY, PRODUCTS TOMORROW

The biggest section of the fair was devoted to a product showcase, which featured many items familiar to PSFK readers (like the DribbleUp smart soccer ball and Dame Products’ connected sex toys from PSFK 2017 speaker Alexandra Fine, to name just two). Visitors had a chance to try an array of VR devices and experiences, ride an electric skateboard and watch a 3D printer in action.

A booth by designer Sandra Atakora demoed an application of augmented reality in retail. The idea expands the possibilities for conveying nutrition information in grocery stores with an AR app (following suit of iterations we’ve seen from Carlo Ratti and Microsoft). Visitors were able to try it against sample cereal boxes using an iPhone or HoloLens. In addition to the app, Atakora designed a concept device inspired by a magnifying glass, which she envisions as a simple AR tool to improve the user experience.

POWDERED CRICKETS AND MEATLESS MEAT

We tried eating crickets for the first time—not in their natural form (still gathering our courage there) but as snack bites and granola from Seek Food and chips from Chirps. Packed with protein and sustainable to farm, crickets are being touted as a staple of food’s future. The products from Seek and Chirps are tasty enough, but since we’re unlikely to replace the satisfaction of real meals with bite-size snacks, the samples made us want to learn more about where and how cricket protein being used in the main course. (Bonus: Watch Studio Industries CEO Mike Lee talk to PSFK 2017 about his future food concepts, including a plate made up of cricket pasta, mealworm bolognese sauce and cricket bread.)

In the courtyard, a branded food truck from The Economist was dishing out Beyond Meat burgers—a plant-based burger designed to look and taste like beef. A representative said the display was the result of interest from the publication’s leadership in rethinking food production for a sustainable future. The burgers were in such short supply by the time we got there, Economist staffers were offering them up only to those who would purchase a year’s subscription to the magazine.

PLEASE TOUCH THE ART

Words Fair Nano incorporated a handful of art installations, including Aqueous by Jen Lewin and Sound Sculpture by Ryan Edwards and Andrew Hlynsky. Visitors could interact with them by walking or jumping on Aqueous to create different color patterns, and by moving or stacking the Sound Sculpture blocks to make music. The simple, meditative functions of these pieces were a kind of reprieve from sensory overload, and we’d love to see more of them—at fairs to come and around our cities. How can we bring interactive tech art to public spaces?

Worlds Fair Nano

Last weekend, 8,000 people passed through the Brooklyn Expo Center over the course of a two-day event known as Worlds Fair Nano. The festival brought the latest tech, experimental food and talks from innovators across industries in front of an audience that doesn’t always get to see them, being outside the circuits of SXSW, TechCrunch Disrupt and other trade shows: the general public.

+Apple
+arts & culture
+Augmented & Virtual Reality
+augmented reality
+Automotive
+Brooklyn
+cities
+Design
+Entertainment
+fitness / sport
+IoT
+Microsoft
+retail
+sport & fitness
+technology
+USA
+Virtual Reality

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