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Input Devices Displays Technology

Some of the Weirder Ideas From CHI 2009 43

Posted by timothy
from the electrooculography-for-100-points-alex dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Technology Review has a roundup of some of the weirder ideas on show at last week's Computer-Human Interaction conference in Boston. They include a trackball that heats up as you roll over different parts of an image, a pair of goggles that track eye movements using electrooculography, and a miniature robot with a cellphone for its head."
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Some of the Weirder Ideas From CHI 2009

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  • I know that guy!
  • Memory matches... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by clone53421 (1310749) on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @10:35AM (#27570323) Journal

    Officially dubbed "Stupidest Idea Ever".

    And no, I'm not going to explain. You'll just have to RTFA. :p

    • by chebucto (992517)

      Seriously.

      I'd expect that sort of thing from Tosser's School of Art and Wankery, but not MIT.

      Not to mention the fact that their experiment was done for the greater part of a century, with film-based cameras.

    • by SalaSSin (1414849)
      Not to use by distracted people, they'll take pics with their match, and light their cigarette with their Nikon...
    • by Tx (96709)

      I dunno. They would take all the hassle out of creating those "this message will self destruct in..." type of messages for secret agents, something that I'm sure we all have to do regularly...ok, maybe it is just dumb.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Chabil Ha' (875116)

      What makes it the stupidest idea ever is the whole reason things have gone digital: cost. Just because storage media costs five one hundredths of a cent to store a single photo doesn't mean that the photo (or the memory) itself is meaningless. It's like we took a time warp to the 60s with 2009 technology, passed around the 'peace pipe', started living at a communal with digital cameras, and started farting out crazy ideas like this. Wake me up when the trip is over!

  • Come again? (Score:5, Funny)

    by hansamurai (907719) <hansamurai@gmail.com> on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @10:40AM (#27570405) Homepage Journal

    ball that heats up as you roll over different parts of an image

    There's a joke in there somewhere.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      ball that heats up as you roll over different parts of an image

      There's a joke in there somewhere.

      Hmm... yes... If only the word "ball" were a euphemism for a part of the body that would be aroused by certain types of images.

      And if only computers were known for easily being able to access those types of images.

      And if only this story were to come across a large body of individuals who both possess this part of the body, and who frequently used computers to download arousing images, and have a certain je ne sais quoi for pointing such a collation.

      Mmm... but I guess that could never be.

  • a pair of goggles that track eye movements

    If this doesn't warrant an "in Soviet Russia" comment I don't know what does.

    • Re: (Score:1, Funny)

      In Soviet Russia, the goggles - they do nothing!!
    • These are already in production use: the movie Beowulf used them to capture the eye-movements of the actors, so clearly the technique is mainstream.

      So you could say "imagine a beowulf cluster" of these tracking you.

      Is it because they are now reduced to a cheap goggle form or something that makes this news?

  • ...like this [youtube.com]. It's cheap, it has more than just novelty value.
  • I can see this being a great idea, right up until somebody gets horribly burnt by it. Maybe it could have uses in porn?
  • Does anyone know of a good Open-Source eye tracking system? Something using high-res cameras would be dandy. Ideally I'd just end up with an eyetap that would work in all situations, but god knows how far anything like that is from production, and I don't want to walk around looking like a hobby shop exploded in my face.

  • Sounds like a bunch of FaceBook losers [livescience.com]...er....users... to me.

  • by Em Emalb (452530) <ememalb@gm[ ].com ['ail' in gap]> on Tuesday April 14, 2009 @11:36AM (#27571283) Homepage Journal

    I tried to enter a device in this event, but they wouldn't let me.

    My idea was (and the prototype worked pretty well) to create a metal leg from the knee down the bolted under the user's desk and USB cables to connect to the computer. When the user did something stupid, fell for a phishing scam, responded in earnest to a 419 scam, downloaded a virus off a website, etc, the foot's lever action kicked in and kicked the user square in the giblets.

    My test run of 16 users in Topeka had "smashing" (and painful) results.

    Sadly, they decided not to let me enter. There is a silver lining though, as there is a small-ish "kick me in the jimmy while I'm watching donkey porn" fetish market out there that is in love with my product.

    • I tried to enter a device in this event, but they wouldn't let me.

      I thought "entering a device" was the whole point of this event.

    • by mewsenews (251487)

      I'm not sure how you got access to my research, but I'm not going to let you steal my idea for the interface to my next-gen MMO. Expect a call from my lawyers.

  • Has anyone tried to pair some of these eye tracking softwares with contacts? I know it might be a bit more niche since not all us geeks wear Glasses/Contacts, but if you can get over the touching your eyes part I'm sure "blank" contacts could be made. Would be interesting to have a pair of glasses with small cameras that just tracked the marks on the contacts. I know my current contacts have marks on the outer edge of the contact with the makers name, perhaps this could even be made with some sort of non

    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Your eye already has markings with can be tracked.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    The article never mentioned the most important aspect of these devices: what is the application for porn?

  • That was seriously useless. Talk about redundant [wikipedia.org].
  • Those won't work. Any Slashdot reader can tell you: The goggles! They do nothing!

    (Yes, even I am groaning as I'm posting this.)

  • I thought it was called HCI now. I heard people made a fuss about the computer coming before human. Meh, I like CHI better anyway.
  • The most impressive eye-tracking device I've ever seen is Tobii [tobii.com]. It's based on infrared sensors which detect the movement of your eyes. I was pretty much amazed with the accuracy of the device, much better than I thought it would be.

Machines certainly can solve problems, store information, correlate, and play games -- but not with pleasure. -- Leo Rosten

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