Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Gesture recognition to control home appliances

Interaction design through gesture recognition can be a bit tricky when it means interacting with a full set of home appliances. Distinguishing between intentional and unintentional gestures is probably the challenge as well as creating an artificial-gestural language strong enough to rely on.
I read a lot on the fact that using gesture is for "TV potatoes" while actually I find using gestures more "sporty". Indeed, one moves the entire hand and arm to control devices whereas a remote only works by pressing a button. The wii is a good example of semi-sport action while playing video games!

Now, seven simple hand gestures to switch your TV on

(...) The controller's built-in camera can recognize seven simple hand gestures and work with up to eight different gadgets around the home, reports The Daily Mail.

The all-seeing wave controller is the brainchild of Australian engineers Dr Prashan Premaratne and Quang Nguyen, who predict its availability on the market within three years.(...)

Its software recognises simple, deliberate hand gestures and then sends the appropriate signal to a universal remote control, designed to work with most makes of television, video recorder, DVD player, hi-fi and digital set-top box.

A clenched fist means "start", an outstretched hand with closed fingers means "power on", a thumbs-up sign means "up" and a sideways victory sign means "channel".

Crucially for anyone with small children, pets or gesticulating family members, the software can distinguish between real commands and unintentional gestures.

Excerpt of article by International reporter, July 2007.

Image from the Daily Mail

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