I posted earlier in Jun about the Trends, Challenges and Technologies to watch” for the next 5 years and that “Augmented Reality” is marked as one of the technologies that will take shape very quickly in the near 2-3 year horizon as highlighted in the 2011 Horizon Report. And just recently, I found that some very interesting projects are in progress at the Microsoft Research Institute, in particular what they classify as natural user interface (NUI) applications.
(1) Holodesk Direct 3D Interaction
Using an interactive system HoloDesk and an optical see-through display along with a Kinect camera and some real-time algorithm for representing hands and other physical objects, users can “physically” interact with a virtual 3D image/objects. This certainly looks like an awesome project, opening up a whole new pathway to the world of learning. Watch the video below and you will be able to see how the Microsoft Holodesk works.
(2) OmniTouch: Wearable Multitouch Interaction Everywhere
OmniTouch is a wearable depth-sensing and projection system that enables interactive multitouch applications on everyday surfaces. Imagine that the clothes or accessories that you wear comes with built-in systems that allows you to use your hands, arms and legs as graphical, interactive surfaces as well as the capability to extend the display to any surfaces around you. Literally, it can put anything you want to do in the palm of your hand. Watch the video here to see how this works.
(3) PocketTouch: Through-Fabric Capacitive Touch Input
PocketTouch makes use of gesture interactions such as simple touches, text entries, etc. to interact with the handheld device, allowing eyes-free operation of devices without you having to remove the device from one’s pants, shirt, bag, or purse.
Watch the video here to see how this works.
While imaginations are running wild on the potential areas that these technologies can be exploited, I am hoping that serious thoughts are also been taken into considerations on the potential health impact they may have on our bodies.