It is often said that the Holy Grail of advertising can be found when creativity meets technology. A supposedly magical moment happens when the two work together in harmony and the results can be amazing, take for example the recent Hobbit campaign where a Windows 8 app allowed fans to print ‘key’ artefacts in 3D.
So for a second year in the running, Microsoft Advertising UK opened its doors and invited the creative world in for an action packed afternoon. An afternoon of future gazing, product updates and hands on experience was laid out for the audience.
To kick things off, Dave Coplin, Microsoft’s Chief Envisaging Officer invited the crowd to temporarily forget the shackles of current technical infrastructures and open their minds to a new world. A world of machine learning, refined interfaces such as Microsoft’s Kinect technology, and manageable big data.
Chris O’Prey, Senior Development Engineer, Technology Transfer & Incubation at Microsoft then presented a live demo of Microsoft Research’s Two Foot Computer Project. A project that explores how Kinect based technology could be used to augment current technical infrastructures instead of trying to reinvent them.
Next, focusing on technology and creativity, Shane Robbins, Solution Strategy Lead for Skype, gave the audience an informative update on Skype, exploring the platform from a more creative angle and from the more traditional advertising viewpoint, not to mention the true power and potential of technologies like Skype. One such example is how Specsavers used the Skype platform to enable entries for a campaign and encourages 66% of those exposed to the ad to take further action.
After a hands on challenge with Windows 8, Rob Adamson, Windows 8 AiA & Mobile Sales Specialist and Ben Richards, Creative solutions specialist from the Microsoft YARN team, took the crowd through advertising opportunities in Windows 8 Adds in Apps. Here is just a taster of what they showcased:
They were then joined on stage by Caleb Al-Jorani (Interactive Art Director) and Peter Browse (Creative Technologist) who walked the crowd through their recent co-ideation with YARN for AllSaints. Caleb and Peter talked through the eases in which they ported web assets across to the AiA platform and explored some of the extra capabilities that the platform had to offer; such as touch, gyro and compass.
The last session saw the Xbox team reveal an under the hood demo of the new Kinect, demonstrating the amazing power that the high fidelity device can offer not just to gaming but, for example, how Kinect might impact retail in the future:
It's clear that advances in technology are rewriting creativity. At Microsoft we have various different technological canvases for the creative world to explore, if you have any questions regarding our platforms or would like to attend future creativity sessions please visit www.microsoftadvertising.co.uk or contact your Microsoft Advertising representative.
Creative Technologist, Microsoft UK.