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Input Devices Displays Hardware Hacking Technology

Open-Source Multitouch Display 62

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the yes-she-knows-it's-a-multipass dept.
shankar writes "Engineers at Eyebeam, an art and technology center based in New York, have created a scaled-down open-source version of Surface, called Cubit. By sharing the Cubit's hardware schematics and software source code, the engineers are significantly reducing the cost of owning a multitouch table. 'Multitouch displays are not new technology; in fact, they've been built in research labs for decades. Mitsubishi Electric Research Labs created an iconic multitouch table called DiamondTouch; more recently, Jeff Han, founder of Perceptive Pixel, based in New York, developed wall-sized multitouch screens that he sells to corporations and major government agencies. But because of the falling costs of many touch-screen components, such as infrared light sources and small cameras and projectors, it's now becoming feasible for people without access to a lab or venture-capital money to make their own multitouch displays.'"
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Open-Source Multitouch Display

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  • by HaeMaker (221642) on Friday May 02, 2008 @09:43PM (#23281622) Homepage
    http://reactrix.com/ [reactrix.com]
  • by idiotwithastick (1036612) on Friday May 02, 2008 @10:26PM (#23281782)
    but the ways that it is being used are. With more powerful processors being smaller and cooler, now devices like the iPhone and the Surface can be built. In addition, these devices have only really become applicable in a time where people are already linked by technology, not 20 years ago when there was no processing power for such a device. One of the more interesting features of Surface is that it can detect digital cameras or cell phones placed on it and (somehow) download photos and videos from it, this too was worthless back in the day before these devices existed or became as common as the wristwatch. The iPhone would have been worthless without the processing power to run the animations used with multi-touch features and the desire for a device more versatile (in user interaction) than the traditional mobile phone or smart phone, which was already pretty good. Having an open source multi-touch kit doesn't provide the software that make devices like the iPhone and Surface what they are, but merely demonstrates to the average guy that multitouch is not a new idea and is easily implemented.
  • by seandiggity (992657) on Saturday May 03, 2008 @12:01AM (#23282134) Homepage
    Seriously. Even if they just get the fire/water effects of compiz going with a device like this, it would be much more awesome than the demo videos. Could have a small table like this as an input device, and a larger screen to show all the compiz coolness. I don't have the requisite skills, but I hope someone in the community hears me :)
  • Re:Benefits (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Peganthyrus (713645) on Saturday May 03, 2008 @11:33AM (#23284424) Homepage
    Maybe the problems it can solve are just not ones you ever have?

    I'm an artist. When I do art in the real world I'm working on a big surface. When I do art in the computer I'm squinting at it through the lens of my laptop screen. I would much rather spend about $1000 for a table-size display I could draw directly onto than the $2500 a 21" Cintiq tablet would cost.

    If your main use for the computer is "writing" - whether it be code, text, mail, irc, or whatever - then yes, a keyboard is your best choice.

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