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New Ways to Interact with Computers: Touching a Holograph

Posted Sep 18 2009 12:01pm

A while back I wrote about my vision for a future way of interacting with computersa program that would let you use full body movements to control your mouse and keyboard. The program would accommodate your fitness level and help you get exercise and stay strong, healthy, and active while getting work done.

So it’s exciting to see this new experiment from Tokyo University of someone moving, bounching, and playing with a floating holographic ball, and actually being able to feel pressure from the holograph.

The researchers apparently used Nintendo Wii controllers to track hand movement, and the pressure that can be felt is created with ultrasonic waves.

I can see this being used to control a mouseinstead of holding your hand on a button all day on your desk, you can lift your arm and point at the screen or holographic buttons. When that gets tiring, you could move the controllers around and find a more comfortable way to work.

For the nearer future, the researchers have other practical applications in mind for the new technologysuch as creating virtual switches in hospitals to maintain sterility and hygiene.

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