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Winextra | April 25, 2014

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Is OmniTouch Microsoft’s next Kinect moment? [Video]

Steven
  • On October 18, 2011
  • http://www.winextra.com

Microsoft is always showing of some pretty interesting technology. Some of it is kind of on the ‘WTH! are they thinking’ side; but then they come out with things like Kinect, which has taken off in ways that I don’t think even Microsoft foresaw.

Following the Kinect line of innovation instead of the PocketTouch ridiculousness Microsoft showed off something called OmniTouch; which is a technology that will turn any surface into a touch computing surface.As with Kinect this interesting technology is coming out via Microsoft Research where one of its co-developers Hrvoje Benko said the idea was to “capitalize on the tremendous surface area the real world provides”.

“The surface area of one hand alone exceeds that of typical smart phones. Tables are an order of magnitude larger than a tablet computer. If we could appropriate these ad hoc surfaces in an on-demand way, we could deliver all of the benefits of mobility while expanding the user’s interactive capability.”

The prototype is a wearable combination of a laser-based pico projector and a depth sensing camera, which is an advanced custom prototype provide by PrimeSense; a name you should recognize from Kinect.

“This custom camera works on a similar principle to Kinect,” Benko says, “but it is modified to work at short range. This camera and projector combination simplified our work because the camera reports depth in world coordinates, which are used when modeling a particular graphical world; the laser-based projector delivers an image that is always in focus, so didn’t need to calibrate for focus.”

“This custom camera works on a similar principle to Kinect,” Benko says, “but it is modified to work at short range. This camera and projector combination simplified our work because the camera reports depth in world coordinates, which are used when modeling a particular graphical world; the laser-based projector delivers an image that is always in focus, so didn’t need to calibrate for focus.”

video via Tom Warren at Winrumors

 

Comments

  1. Kind of awesome, but I’m intrigued how they’re going to get the mobility without a shoulder mount.

    • @PaulOFlaherty I have vision of something like from 5th Element with a combination headcam/projector and ear piece

  2. Pierre

    There has recently been an ad for a bank on French TV, where people use any surface, or even thin air, to “display” a calculator, a loan payback schedules, etc…

  3. besourosuco

    http://www.pranavmistry.com/projects/sixthsense/ This is another project with the same approach, I’ve watched the TED a long time ago, but still with no software avaliable to test.

  4. GregMadison

    I was a finalist in the Microsoft Imagine Cup with this project in 2009, just before the 6th Sense came out. Ironically, it is called the 7th Sense.The concept is very similar to mine! http://www.facebook.com/The7thSense

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