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Your touchscreen will soon distinguish between a finger, fingernail and a knuckle

Your touchscreen will soon distinguish between a finger, fingernail and a knuckle
Imagine being able to call up different features on your touchscreen phone depending on whether you used your finger, fingernail or knuckle on the screen. This is not as far away as you might think. Chris Harrison, a computer scientist at Carnegie Mellon University, has modified a Samsung Galaxy S III to distinguish the difference in touch input between a finger, fingernail and a knuckle.

The modded Samsung Galaxy S III has a small vibration sensor and when combined with Harrison's FingerSense software, the sensor can tell the difference between the three touch inputs based on vibrations and acoustics. A finger tip could let you select an object from the screen while a knuckle tap could act like a right-click on a mouse and show a sub-menu.

Harrison has started a company called Qeexo to sell the device and he says that the sensor can be added to the main circuit board of any smartphone. Harrison says he is in talks with major smartphone manufacturers now to bring this technology to the public. Harrison, though, says "the real magic is in the software, this artificial intelligence that lives in the heart of the phone".

source: Newscientist, YouTube via Gizmodo

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