Amazing smartwatch mod could hold key to user interfaces of the future


Remember how Tom Cruise interacted with the giant computer screens in Minority Report by simply waving his hands? Scientists at the Carnegie Mellon University are now bringing this futuristic vision closer to reality with a clever smartwatch mod that utilizes the different sensors inside smart wearable devices, in order to make things like playing and skipping between videos as simple as snapping your fingers. Literally.

By altering the sampling rate of a smartwatch accelerometer, the researchers have managed to make it communicate with a computer in an entirely new way. By upping the sampling rate frequency by nearly 3900 percent, from 100 Hz to 4 kHz, the modded watch can pick up subtle bioacustic signals, allowing it to perform such tasks as help you tune a guitar by feeling the vibrations of each string tightening or loosening through the hand you're turning the pegs with. The mod is able to differentiate between so many distinct “gestures”, that the possibilities for its implementation in user interfaces are close to infinite. It can tell whether you're snapping your fingers, tapping your palm, wrist, or forearm, rotating your hand, and many other gestures which could be used for human-computer interactions.

The scientists at the Carnegie Mellon University have made a cool proof-of-concept video showcasing the mod's surprising agility at guessing what actions the user is performing. Watch it below:

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source: Future Interfaces Group via Gizmodo

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