Tuesday, October 2, 2007

It's an MFin' multi-touch extravaganza!

Yet another reason that full movement restoration is necessary for the paralyzed. As technology advances, the interfaces will become more and more geared toward uniquely human forms of interaction. Controlling a cursor doesn't mean much if it goes the way of trackballs. (Okay, I still know a few people that use trackballs, but you get the idea.)

Multitouch is nothing too new, but has really gained fame for being used in Apple's iPhone. The idea is that a touch sensitive surface should be able to detect when a user is fiddling with it with more than one finger. On the iPhone, this gives the user the ability to zoom in and out from pictures by 'pinching' (or I guess anti-'pinching) their fingers across the screen.

Got $1600 lying around and an itching to show off your latest animation and movie laden Powerpoint presentation. Well Hitachi just rolled out the 77 inch Starboard FX-77 whiteboard with multitouch. I like that you can link up to 50 of them together. Not sure why, but I think that would make for some zany mega-multitouch action.

Another groovy multitouch related product from Sharp is being shown off at CEATEC right now (yes now!). Basically it's an LCD screen that also acts as a scanner. How does multitouch fit in? It can scan the screen for fingers planted against it, rather than using the various technologies listed in the article. How would you feel to have your screen looking back at you!?!?! Creepy. This comes to mind...

And lastly, Microsoft and Mitsubishi has been working on what they call LucidTouch, a fully touch sensitive, two-sided interface idea. I'm not sure what the real utility is besides having some ability to influence the front surface by the grip on the device, but I'm sure some of you creative folks could turn this into an interpretive art thingy. Video below.

Man, Engadget loves the multitouch.

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