Everyone with a smart phone or tablet has experienced interacting with photographs by pinching and stretching the screen of their device to zoom or move around. Not so many people have questioned why it's not possible to do this with videos.
Middlesex University MSc Creative Technology student Lionel Chok and his team decided to address this imbalance, and their resulting project 'Sharon' picked up a Hack The Visual Award at the end of June.
Over 100 hackers, makers, designers, developers and visual artists came together for the 48-hour hackathon in London's Shoreditch, with the challenge of uncovering the hidden possibilities of imagery and technology.
At the end of the two-day event the various projects went before the judges, with Sharon winning Lionel and his team won a prize of £500 as 'the most immersive and interactive visual experience'.
"Since using the very first iPhone, we have become accustomed to pinching our photos to zoom," says Lionel, an international student from Singapore.
"However, interactivity through pinching videos, especially while it's playing, has never been a feature. Imagine having the ability to zoom in for close-ups, slow-mo an action sequence, or even speed up a slow-paced montage - all while your video is playing!"
After proposing the idea to his team during the Hack The Visual hackathon, Lionel researched the concept and worked on the interface design and brand of the app.
Along with software engineer Etiene Dalcol, designer Sarah Fox and web developer Eduardo Cardenes, Lionel is now hoping that they can take the app to market.
"After a good rest from the hackathon, all of us are now brainstorming and evaluating the viability of taking it further, looking at possibilities of how we can turn this into an app or business," he says.
Find out more about Lionel and his team's build and development here