Almost from the moment Minority Report was released and showcased the coolest gestural technology yet seen on film, people were clamoring for the chance to get their hands on real-world products. Well, about a decade later, you can literally get your hands, or more specifically, your hand, on the fruits of that gestural-tech promise. Okay, you still have to wait about six months, BUT unlike other similar products featured in earlier blogs, this one is actually affordable, and way cool.
The Leap “is a small iPod sized USB peripheral that creates a 3D interactive space of 8 cubic feet to precisely interact with and control software on your laptop or desktop computer.” Here’s the video that piqued Wired’s interest. Does it remind you of anything?
Wired magazine’s online Gadget Lab recently got their hands on the Leap and were more than impressed with the product. Leap Motion claimed that it allowed your computer to interpret natural hand movements almost immediately. Wired found this to be true. In their hands-on demo, they could detect very little lag time between hand gesture and screen reaction, a quality they found very impressive. Also, as claimed by Leap Motion, the Gadget Lab test found that the device could distinguish between each individual finger movement—and big, sweeping gestures weren’t necessary either. The Leap can pick of small, refined movements that are appropriate when interacting with a desktop or laptop.
Like all new technologies that have the potential to take over for popular and familiar products (keyboards, mouses, trackpads), the Leap will require some time to supplant those devices. Wired feels the Leap will be a novelty for most users in the beginning, but that as it develops, it could become another new standard that reshapes the way we interact with our computers.
To see just how similar the Leap is to the gestural interface used in Minority Report, check out this scene from the Spielberg/Cruise film.
Tom works with an early prototype of gestural technology
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