Working Imaginary Phone (Video)
You’re doing dishes and at the climatic momment when your hands are soaked to the bone and covered in food waste and suds, the phone starts ringing. It’s that job you’ve been inquiring about, and you’re about to let that opportunity wash down the drain. The imaginary phone wants to help you out. The people at the Hasso Plattner Institute at Potsdam University in Germany have created a way to use your palm as a means to operate your phone. They refer to this as using imaginary devices, and have plenty of ideas on how to implement it.
They decided to use “depth cameras,” similar to those used in Microsoft’s Kinect. These cameras can tell where on your palm you are touching, and relay that information to a computer where the command is processed and then sent to the device.
A device needs to be worn that will be able to see what you are doing on the hand, which at this time happens to be a bulky head mounted device. Admittedly not the most convenient feature right now. However, they plan to start sizing the camera down and integrating it into things you wouldn’t even think of, such as a button or pendant.
Patrick Baudisch, a collegue at Hasso Plattner Institue, hopes to refine the technology so much that people can go “all-imaginary” and leave their physical devices at home.