In anticipation of unveiling Google Material Design and Google+ Stories at Google I/O 2014, Google partnered with Big Spaceship to create a community-driven installation that would capture the experiences of event-goers and keynote speakers in realtime. The installation displayed dynamic particle animations and a user interface that mirrored the latest Google Material Design.
We got a preview of Material Design a couple of weeks before it was announced at the Google I/O. We wanted to make sure we brought the bright color palette to life in the best way possible. We selected a few of our favorites into mini palettes and combined them into shapes that would later be animated to reflect the folding paper feel of Material Design.
We knew that the installation was going to be up for two days. We made sure to plan the flow of the content ahead of getting into the smaller design details. This allowed us to consider featured content like product announcements and mix in people’s reactions from the event and online. We then planned the rhythm for the particle animations that would generate the shapes we created. It was important that the animations were dynamically generated so the visuals did not become repetitive.
The main layout for the concept was inspired from what now is known as Google Photo Stories. It was first announced at Google I/O 2014 as part of Google+. We used the horizontal layout of floating cards from Google Photo Stories as a timeline to tell the story of the event live as it happened. The animated particles and overlapping cards added depth to the display and made it feel more alive.
The display encouraged people to share more as they saw their photos and comments appear at a large scale. It was also a playful backdrop to take a selfie or just a relaxing area people could hangout by and stay connected with what’s happening at the event. It was very cool to see how people interacted with our installation.