The latest trend in the world of online consumable media seems to be all about participation. Forget Facebook, Twitter, Wikipedia and other user-generated content mavens, the next wave of the creative internet is about finding ways to get consumers to participate and interact with media that have traditionally been static and one-sided.
Take "Operation Ajax" for example, the new app for the iPad 2 which offers readers the opportunity to read a graphic novel based on the infamous Iran Coup d'Etat, but at the same time read archived documents, watch historical footage and experience animated storyboarding bring the text to life in front of their eyes. This app has the potential to revolutionize how we read graphic novels both online and on our tablet devices! (Check it out here).
But this trend could go even further - now even documentaries and movies can be hitched up to this wave of participation, allowing users to choose the stories that they want to watch.
That's where Out My Window comes in. Developed in association with the National Film Board of Canada and Waterloo's very-own Imaginarius (co-founded by no-less than Natalie MacNeil, whom Techvibes has interviewed before), Out My Window is the world's first 360 degrees, interactive documentary film. Chronicling the lives of 49 different people in 13 different cities around the world, it explores the various ways in which people have harnessed the power of the human spirit and community in order to bring meaning to life in the urban jungle.
In Natalie's own words:
Out My Window is the perfect pairing of storytelling, art, and technology. At Imaginarius we have a passion for fusing these elements in ways that have never been seen before. One of the experiences I'm most grateful for in my life is having the opportunity to travel around the world and experience how other people live. We bring that experience to people on their computer screen with 49 stories from 13 cities around the world, told in 13 languages.
Go ahead, check it out. Out My Window is 100% free and a gem to watch. Oh and did I mention that it got nominated for International Digital Emmy Awards in the Non-Fiction category?
Fingers crossed everyone, I think we have a serious contender here.