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Computer Human Interface

The first commercially available Brain Computer Interface

The evolution of the Computer Human interface may seem to be rooted in the infernal keyboard and its recent travelling companion, the mouse, but much work is being done in the areas of virtual worlds, voice recognition, handwriting recognition and gesture recognition to give us a new paradigm of computing. It now appears we are on the edge of another brave new virtual world – the direct interface between the brain and the computer is here. One of the Holy Grail’s of research, there are many such projects going on around the world at present. Now the German g.tec (Guger Technologies) group has taken the technology out of the lab and into the real world with a complete BCI kit, and amazingly, there’s also a kit for a pocket PC - a super-low-weight biosignal recording system “g.MOBIlab” is used to measure the EEG and the data processing, analysis and pattern recognition are performed on a commercially available Pocket PC or in this case, your windows PC. The first BCI system will enable the composition and sending of messages, and control of a computer game. There’s also an invasive (implanted) option still being trialled in the laboratory – this is significantly more effective abnd the system can already accept and process input from both the embedded array and the cap array. Though the first work in the area is focussed on enabling paralysed humans to communicate far more freely, the potential to enhance one’s communications quite freely is clearly not that far away. There’s also the potential unlocked by putting such a device into the hands of thousands of eager and capable amateurs who will no doubt broaden the understanding of the human mind with their pursuits. The BCI system is nominated for the 2007 European ICT Grand Prize.  Read More

Motion-Sensing capabilities moving to Consumer Electronics

November 9, 2006 The pictured object is a TV remote control, designed to be much easier to use than that array of buttons you currently use that make a piano accordion look simple. The Loop is Hillcrest's first Freespace-enabled product, a bracelet-shaped TV remote control with just two buttons and a scroll wheel. Users hold The Loop in one hand, and it translates their motions into on-screen cursor movements. Using the scroll wheel and the two buttons, users can browse through TV channels or change the volume. Motion-sensing has been in use in computer games for some time, offering a more immersive, intuitive experience - consumer electronics will be next - for sure!  Read More

A glimpse at the future of the Human-Computer Interface

October 20, 2006 With applications in just about every forseeable field of personal and business computing, we're expecting the Upravlator keyboard (the latest concept from Art Lebedev, and the cousin of the Optimus keyboard) to do very well when it hits the market. It's a 10.8 inch, 640x480 LCD with twelve square buttons occupying it's surface. The twelve buttons each have five contacts - one in the center, top, bottom, left and right, which are freely assignable to UI elements in the software of your choice.  Read More

The not-so-ugly diNovo Edge keyboard

October 4, 2006 If there were a technology beauty contest, the keyboard would be a shoe-in for last place, being the epitome of organisationally dyslexic, high-tech-by-accident unsightliness. But in the world of the keyboard, Logitech’s new diNovo Edge keyboard is indeed a beauty, though we’re gonna stop way short of Logitech’s PR copywriter’s description of it being a “minimalist work of high-technology art.” Reflecting the growing importance and visibility of the PC in today’s home, the rechargeable diNovo Edge has some compelling features such as an integrated touch-sensitive navigation and scroll panel, and includes embedded Bluetooth wireless technology (and it aint as ugly as a normal one).  Read More

TouchBook Touch User Interface (TUI) to be used by NASA

October 1, 2006 Somatic Digital announced today that it will provide NASA Goddard Flight Center with its TouchBook Touch User Interface (TUI) platform. The TUI is to the printed page what the Graphic User Interface (GUI) is to the computer screen. It is an open convergence technology that enables readers of normally printed materials to touch the page and retrieve digital content or launch communication applications on a computer. Currently, the TUI can retrieve digital content and launch communication applications via Windows XP or Mac OS X. The functions that can be driven from a web page can also be conducted from a printed page.  Read More

The Fraunhofer Multimedia Dome

September 6, 2006 Making its first public appearance at the IFA international consumer electronics fair in Berlin, the Multimedia Dome is the first digital dome theatre to feature natural spatial sound: it envelops visitors in fascinating universe of video pictures and sound. The Multimedia Dome was developed at the Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Architecture and Software Technology FIRST and the Fraunhofer Institute for Digital Media Technology IDMT, the inventors of the MP3 format which has taken over the world in the last decade.  Read More

Panoptic C-Thru 3D Video Surveillance System

August 31, 2006 Panoptic’s proposed C-Thru 3D Video Surveillance System could be loosely described as a formalised, scalable implementation of Superman’s X-ray vision. The system enables one or more surveillance agents, using a single high resolution, auto-stereoscopic display, to remotely monitor the security situation of an arbitrarily large number of locations at-a-glance. Agents can see, hear and transport their focused viewpoint through walls, floors and ceilings, zooming into a specific location to monitor it at a level so acute that it seems beyond the levels of even science fiction. Designed to enable both wholistic site-wide and granular-level security, the system is ideal for monitoring airports, shipping ports, transit sites and other ports-of-entry, hotels, casinos, shopping malls, campuses, military bases, large buildings and building complexes, offering total situational awareness at a glance.  Read More

Powered Shoes - another breakthrough Virtual Reality interface

June 30, 2006 Each year the place to be for anyone in computer graphics, animation and virtual reality is the SIGGRAPH conference which will be held in Boston (July 30-August 3) this year and some of the incredible exhibits planned are just beginning to come to light. One that really captures our imagination is this set of powered shoes developed by Hiroshi Tomioka and Hiroaki Yano at the University of Tsukuba in Japan. The University of Tsukuba is a hotbed of research with a lot of development of virtual reality interfaces underway. The Powered Shoes are just one of a number of projects designed to enable a person to realistically move through a virtual world without needing to move from the spot. Working like reverse roller-skates, the Powered Shoes effectively cancel the horizontal displacement of the user as they are driven from electrical motors in a backpack worn by the user, enabling omni-directional walking while maintaining the wearer's position. As such, the powered shoes are an important advancement in the world of entertainment and simulation and are the only viable alternative we have seen capable of emulating the capabilities of the landmark Virtusphere,  Read More

Personal Dashboard from Ambient Devices

May 3, 2006 Ambient Devices is a company which specialises in producing glanceable information displays which allow any customer to have a constant awareness of their important information, without the anxiety of information overload. Ambient's vision is to embed information representation into everyday objects such as lamps, pens, watches, walls, and wearables so the physical environment becomes an interface to digital information rendered in subtle changes in form, movement sound, colour or light.  Read More

A new breed of computer human interface for sports video game fans

March 22, 2006 From the time the first steering wheel controller was hooked to a computer, the future of video game controllers grew exponentially larger. Whatever the game being played, there was bound to be something that could be manufactured that would enhance the realism of the experience. Qmotions is a company devoted to creating new kinds of interactive experiences that combine real-world physicality with the immersive virtual environments found in computer and console video games and at last month’s American International Toy Fair 2006 it rolled out several new such interfaces, most notably its Xboard (for surfing, skateboarding, snowboarding and windsurfing video games), and Qmotions-Fun Fitness, a new device that converts recumbent bikes into video game machines, offering a compelling way to get fit and play games at the same time. There’s also a golf and a baseball controller, offering a diverse range of indoor fun for otherwise outdoor activities.  Read More

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