Digital Dimension - embracing the bookstore experience for ebooks.
Find digital content with the pleasure of browsing books. A table with physical books as triggers.


I love bookstores. The smell of books, the serendipity of stumbling and discovering new titles – a type of experience the digital bookstores deeply lack. However, my reading behavior gravitates more towards screens. Digital Dimension is a table in a bookstore, where you can discover digital content. You just take any book from the shelf and put it on the table. You can see information about the eBook version and see a sample on your device. If you buy the book at the register, all pages unlock.

What is the core principle of your idea?

The experience of just browsing a store is important. You can just run into something great and unexpected. A book store is a place to go and spend time. So I embrace this experience to discover digital content.

Technology (aimed at bridging virtual and physical)

Image recognition - The table uses image recognition to identify the book. Bluetooth Beacons - used to recognize what user/device is close by (requires an app installed at user's device unfortunately) to send the sample.

Can your idea be applied to different formats (in a bookstore, at a trade fair, at a conference)?

The format is versatile and can be used to bridge any 'recognizable' object and personal devices.

Bookstore: discover purchase digital version of physical book Trade fair: discover commercial details of certain item (book, movie, business card, etc.) Conference: use this ritual to take home physical information picked up during the event (imagine these stations allowing you to beam business cards from people you met to your phone, without taking your phone out of your pocket.)

Would it be possible to turn your idea into a reality, or at least create a prototype of it, at short notice, i.e. by the Frankfurt Book Fair in October 2014?

What I am showing here is already a very limited prototype. If we would limit the amount of books it should work with, we could easily make this happen by using the Qualcomm AR library for Unity, or Intel IPP / openCV and a limited database.

What do you estimate the costs for the prototype or the final implementation of your idea to be?

If we would build this, each 'station' or table would cost about 1200 EUR in material and 300 in labour. Software development would take about two weeks at developer rates, so that would amount to 8000 EUR. A setup of four stations at a pavilion at the fair would cost about 12.500. Just one station about 9.000, since development time is amortized over just one station.