If your fantasies involve user interfaces, here’s a site for you

Kit FUI is a new site devoted to those cool (and fictional) user interfaces you see in movies and on TV

star_trek_fui-600x450_0.jpgImage credit: OOOii/Paramount Pictures
The docking interface from Star Trek Into Darkness

I hope you’re sitting down for this newsflash but lots of what you see in movies and on TV is fake. Is the room done spinning? That fakery often includes what you see on computer screens. Just last month I wrote about the technology used in (and behind the scenes) of the movie WarGames, including how they generated what you saw on the giant wall displays at NORAD while the world was brought to the brink of global thermonuclear war. 

In more recent times, we’ve seen more and more really cool fantasy (or fake or fictional) user interfaces (FUIs) on the big and small screens. Whether it’s the display Tom Cruise controls by waving his arms (way before the Wii or the Kinect) in Minority Report or the cool displays in Iron Man or the detailed interfaces used by Q in Skyfall, lots of work goes into making those UIs look extra high-techy and supercool. Not surprisingly, some people are really into these fantasy UIs.

If you’re one of those people, we have some good news. The folks at Noteloop have developed what they call an “IMDB-like database” of FUIs used in the movies and on TV, named Kit FUI. The site provides information on the designers behind FUIs seen in recent movies, TV shows and commercials, as well as links to screenshots, videos and associated things like interviews with FUI designers. It’s also organized by designers and production companies.

It’s a fun site to poke around which should only get more fun as they add data on more FUIs. Be warned though: after looking at all those futuristic UIs it may be hard to readjust to plain old Windows or OS X when it’s time to get back to work.

Read more of Phil Johnson's #Tech blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Phil on Twitter at @itwphiljohnson. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.

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