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The Leap: Gesture Control Like Kinect, But Cheaper and Higher Resolution 192

Posted by samzenpus
from the all-the-better-to-track-you-with dept.
MrSeb writes "It seems Minority Report-style computer interfaces might arrive a whole lot sooner than we expected: A new USB device, called The Leap, creates an 8-cubic-feet bubble of 'interaction space,' which detects your hand gestures down to an accuracy of 0.01 millimeters — about 200 times more accurate than 'existing touch-free products and technologies,' such as your smartphone's touchscreen or Microsoft Kinect. Unfortunately Leap Motion (the company behind the Leap) is being very tight-lipped about the technology being used, but it's probably some kind of infrared LIDAR (radar, but using light), or perhaps a high-resolution version of Kinect (which only uses a 640x480 camera). It's available to pre-order for $70 — and developers can register for a free device + SDK."
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The Leap: Gesture Control Like Kinect, But Cheaper and Higher Resolution

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Why do we need all these fucking gestures and shit? I guess most people still haven't figured out how to TYPE.

    • by ArcherB (796902)

      Why do we need all these fucking gestures and shit? I guess most people still haven't figured out how to TYPE.

      It's a workout trying to get connect to recognize what I'm doing, but even if it were more accurate, I still have to hold my arms out to simply find out where the "pointer" is.

      A mouse is still a better pointing device. A flick of the wrist is much more efficient in all ways than a wave of the arm.

      • by Chirs (87576) on Monday May 21, 2012 @12:53PM (#40066269)

        I would love to be able to lean back, rest my elbows on my chair armrest, forearms vertical, and control stuff by moving my fingers around. Much less strain on the wrists.,since the hands would be directly over them and in a neutral position.

      • by alexborges (313924) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:11PM (#40066543)

        Missing the point: it is not about computers, its about a wall mounted intelligent tv with automatic voice-command recognition that can turn your coffee on or off, download your tv episodes ...etc.

        The future for computers has always been ubiquity, invisibility and support for daily shit.

      • by Belial6 (794905)
        This wouldn't be a good replacement for a mouse, just as a mouse isn't a good replacement for a keyboard. I would be great as an addition though. Take volume control as an example. There are (at least in American culture) universal hand gestures for telling someone you want them to increase or decrease volume as well as mute. There is also a universal gesture to indicate that you want the current activity to stop dead in it's tracks. I'm sure that we could think of all sorts of natural hand gestures th
        • This wouldn't be a good replacement for a mouse, just as a mouse isn't a good replacement for a keyboard. I would be great as an addition though.

          I agree and I'm sure that interesting ideas will come out of this, despite the knee-jerk reactions of some of the posters here.

    • by iivel (918436) on Monday May 21, 2012 @12:49PM (#40066193) Homepage
      Personally, I'll be registering for a developer kit; or buying one outright to help a friend of mine with ALS. Since she's severely limited in movement, the ability to control her computer (and thereby much of her enviornment) via small recognizable gestures would be a drastic improvement for her quality of life.
      • by swalve (1980968)
        That's a nice thought, but if she can't work a mouse, how is she going to work this?
        • by b0bby (201198) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:55PM (#40067165) Homepage

          Maybe she can move her head, or just her whole hand; there could be any number of ways to use this when you can't move a mouse. ALS is horrible, anything which can make life easier for her is a good thing.

        • by Delwin (599872)
          Point it at your face and make twitching movements with your cheeks. This takes the technology in Stephan Hawking's chair and makes it inexpensive enough people with ALS who aren't world famous scientsts could use it.
    • by Brad1138 (590148)
      Have you not seen Ironman? How else can you easily and quickly design custom metal suits?
    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 21, 2012 @12:52PM (#40066259)

      There are plenty of environments where keyboards aren't ideal or even possible... think about a hospital OR (viewing PACS data) or media-based presentation. Such setups could also be helpful in other areas where sanitary rules would make touch-less devices a much better solution, like food processing plants and restaurants, etc.

      Of course what's wrong with only 640K anyway? I guess people just haven't learn to code properly.

      • well for those areas where there is a serious Ick/Squick factor they do make "rollup" keyboards that can in fact be sanitized/cleaned.
        And worst case all you would have to do is roll the keyboard up and chuck it into the nearest "burn bag/Bin". (and yes these things are cheap enough that having to BBin say 4 or 5 a month should not be a budget breaker)

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          So you're saying why innovate new technology when there's an existing technology right now that's cheap enough to just burn up and throw away?

          You work for the oil industry, don't you?

    • by Thanshin (1188877) on Monday May 21, 2012 @12:56PM (#40066325)

      Why do we need all these fucking gestures and shit? I guess most people still haven't figured out how to TYPE.

      Typing is an unnatural interface that we've just grown accustomed to. After a while, we've become quite good at typing, but it's still an interface that one has to actually learn to use.

      A more natural interface would be speech, but speech recognition is still far from the reliability of a keyboard.

      On a parallel path, the mouse, while much (MUCH) more natural than a keyboard, can still get better. As soon as 2D displays are really replaced by 3D, mice would have to become 3D also.

      The first problem was that 2D display (screen) and 2D gesture recognition (mouse) were easier than speech recognition. And now we are in a similar situation with 3D mice (this) and 3D screens (still crap).

      The beauty of it all it that they'll all eventually converge in the same spot. Thought input and though output.

      • by h4rr4r (612664) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:09PM (#40066521)

        Speech is an unnatural interface, that one has to learn to use. It is also slow, inaccurate and cumbersome. Those are the problem when using it to interacts with other humans, trying to use it with computers is even worse.

        The mouse is less natural, try to show an old person one. They will prefer the keyboard. 3D displays will not

        • by h4rr4r (612664)

          finishing above reply:

          3D displays will not catch on if they are still going to be stereoscopic. Holographic displays may catch on, but a mouse and keyboard will likely still be in use. Just like current 3D modeling uses them.

      • by teslar (706653)

        A more natural interface would be speech

        But that would be a terrible main interface. I don't want to talk at my computer for hours per day. And I'm pretty sure that people who, for instance, work in large open plan offices or even in a cubicle farm wouldn't want the 200 colleagues in the same room all constantly yapping away at their computers either. As I'm typing this, others are in the same room watching TV and they wouldn't appreciate me dictating this either.

        Typing may not be natural but at least it's

    • type? lookee here everyone, we got ourselves a typist.

      in my day we scrawled shit on cave walls with our own blood. and we liked it!

    • by cupantae (1304123) <(moc.liamg) (ta) (llienoram)> on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:46PM (#40067005)

      "For a new technology to be successful, it must replace all usage cases of older technology"
        -- /. Anonymous Cowards and Moderators (apparently)

      In my current setup, I'd say I use my keyboard ~90% of the time and my mouse only about 10%.
      Listen: I'm still glad I have the mouse.

      • by Belial6 (794905)
        That is the key. There are few places that I would be happy with just a keyboard. My TV (which is a Linux computer build into the TV) is the closest, but I'm not really happy with the interface. It just sucks less than every other option. Likewise there are very few places I would be happy with just a mouse.
    • by ron_ivi (607351) <sdotno AT cheapcomplexdevices DOT com> on Monday May 21, 2012 @02:02PM (#40067257)

      Why do we need all these fucking gestures and shit? I guess most people still haven't figured out how to TYPE.

      That is exactly *why* we need gesture recognition.

      People communicate with each other -- and with their pets, and even with pre-verbal babies -- with gestures and not with keyboards.

      I often use this as an example of why we continue to need better compute power --- until I can give my computer a dirty look or an obscene gesture to make it stop doing something I don't like, we'll continue to have a need for better human-computer interfaces.

      This is *exactly* a step in the right direction -- where the computer learns how humans communicate -- instead of making humans have to learn something convenient for computers (pushing buttons / typing on keyboards).

      • by bware (148533)

        People communicate with each other -- and with their pets, and even with pre-verbal babies -- with gestures and not with keyboards.

        I'm not sure that this is true now [1] much less that it will be in the future. While I'm not closeted in my mom's basement, I'd estimate that at least 50% of my interactions with my colleagues, collaborators, friends (incl. those of the girl variety), and family occur through keyboards. Think about it. Text, chat, email, social networks - even with the people I live with, w

    • by mcgrew (92797) *

      Insightful? Don't you just love it when some goofball logs in as AC with an ignorant luddite remark, then logs in and mods himelf up, then logs in under his sock puppet and "hey! I Gots me some mod points on this sucker, too!"

      I guess most people still haven't figured out how to TYPE

      Typing is only useful when you need to write. I was comfortable with a command line twenty years or so ago, but the mouse makes far more sense for anything except communication or documentation.

      Good luck using PhotoShop (or damne

    • Why do we need all these fucking gestures and shit?

      Angus Podgorney prefers the soothing click and clack of his abacus!

    • Will it register obscene gestures, and send them to the Vatican?

      Brrr... Albino Opus Dei knocking on your door...

  • by Thanshin (1188877) on Monday May 21, 2012 @12:42PM (#40066089)

    "about 200 times more accurate than 'existing touch-free products and technologies,' such as your smartphone's touchscreen"

    They sure have a bizarre definition of "touch-free" if it includes a touchscreen.

  • Fishy... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Missing.Matter (1845576) on Monday May 21, 2012 @12:47PM (#40066161)

    I'm having trouble understanding exactly what kinds of technology this device is using to obtain accuracy on the level of 10 micrometers for $70. On the website they only state:

    Leap Motion technology is a breakthrough in computer interaction, using a patented mathematical approach to 3D, touch-free motion sensing and motion control software that’s unlike anything that currently exists on the market or in academia. Developed over the past 4 years, Leap Motion moves far beyond the current technologies designed for distant arm waving.

    But that say a whole lot of nothing... Why are they being so coy about the technology behind the device? According to cnet [cnet.com], the company says:

    "It's not as if we're using lots of processing power or some new hardware that just came on to the market," he said. "This is really about a fundamental scientific breakthrough, many Eureka moments that (Holz) stumbled through over four or five years of research."

    So they want me to believe they came up with some magic algorithm, and not some new hardware tech? Because as far as I'm aware, the limitations in most sensors is hardware based, not software.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      add to that the leap itself is supposed to be that little box but is somehow able to scan both sides of your hand at the same time and see stacked objects (the video shows hands passing over each other for example) and it kinda looks staged...

    • Re:Fishy... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by vlm (69642) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:03PM (#40066445)

      I'm having trouble understanding exactly what kinds of technology this device is using to obtain accuracy on the level of 10 micrometers for $70. On the website they only state:

      I'm having huge difficulty understanding how this is getting rolled out for video gaming instead of manufacturing.

      A 3-d CAD "tasting" probe that goes in place of a cutting tool and touches what you're working on to measure its dimensions is about that accurate, very slow, requires some setup, and in manufacturing we pretty much don't care how much it costs (In a world of $100K milling machines and $30/hr CAM programmers, don't really care if its $70 one time cost or $7000)

      If this isn't vaporware, how come I haven't heard about this tech destroying existing CAM monitoring/testing sensor systems?

      Heck, 10 micrometers with low enough latency for gaming is enough to close the loop on a servo system.. imagine that, a CAM servo controller that doesn't need encoders. Weird but it could happen. Not to mention integrated OSHA detection of people entering the envelope or detection cataclysmic tool failure (snapped off).

      I should be hearing about this making motor driver manufacturers and DRO manufacturers quake in their boots.

      • I'm having huge difficulty understanding how this is getting rolled out for video gaming instead of manufacturing.

        Yes! This is something I was also thinking. This kind of technology would be great in medicine, manufacturing, various industrial applications, robotics, retail... they could have complete domination over various sectors worth billions. Yet they're shooting for consumer electronics? Seriously?

        • medical devices, even those that are not going to be touching patients require a lot of safety testing, especially if this thing is spraying EM all over the place potentially interfering with medical devices in the operating room.

          They maybe going for the low hanging fruit to get some revenue flowing in while they develop the device for more safety critical applications.
      • by guruevi (827432)

        video measuring CAN really be that precise (given the right sensors, lenses, calibration and algorithms). A servo controller using camera's - see what (amateur) robots can do these days merely on "sight".

        Why haven't you heard about such tech yet - there are various problems when applying this to your specific field
        - Nobody has made it yet (well they have, but not repurposed for your machines)?
        - Your machines are 100k+ as you said yourself, your boss is not going to throw those out within 3 years and those m

        • by nomel (244635)

          I'd agree, but this would have to be something to do with infrared, otherwise it wouldn't work in the evening. I have trouble believing much information would be present in an infrared-only illuminated hand, although, the numbers they quote could be best case (well lit room with wrinkle hands).

        • see what (amateur) robots can do these days merely on "sight".

          Sorry, even the best applications of vision in robotics at the top universities and companies in the world are not this accurate. A sensor as accurate as they're claiming should be able to measure the height of a grain of salt sitting on a table top.

          • by vlm (69642)

            A sensor as accurate as they're claiming should be able to measure the height of a grain of salt sitting on a table top.

            Thats a pretty good estimate ... isn't this sensor being claimed at 10 microns and a typical sieve size for table salt is around 70 microns?

            I can one up measuring one crystal. If this sensor exists, you should be able to dump out a salt shaker on a two seater restaurant table around 4 x 2 feet, snap one "photo" or whatever you call the data gathering in a fraction of a full motion video second, and then computationally analyze the location and surface condition/damage of each individual salt crystal (well,

            • Here's another number for how ridiculous the resolution claim is. They claim it works in a 8ft^3 volume... let's assume the 2D projection of this is a 2ftx2ft plane. This is equivalent to an area of 371612160000 microns^2. That's 300 billion microns^2, or 3x10^11 points of data. So we're talking about processing a point cloud on the order of hundreds of billions of points in real time over USB. How realistic is that? Let's assume they're using USB 3.0, with a theoretical maximum transmission speed of 5 Gbit

              • If they preprocess the data and only transmit the location of the points of interest (say density transitions, which correspond to surfaces), the bandwidth requirement drops substantially. At about 50 seconds into the ExtremeTech video it shows what appears to be some sort of point cloud corresponding to the surface of the hand(s). I assume this is pretty close to the raw data sent to the computer.

        • by vlm (69642)

          Your machines are 100k+ as you said yourself, your boss is not going to throw those out within 3 years and those machines have no place for such newfangled tech yet.

          no no. A mill is kind of a basic unit of production machine and those cost $100K (well, it varies from $5K up to ...) and a digitizer/taster probe costs about $400, plus or minus software, etc. Currently you stick a $400 probe and some software in a $100K mill and hours later your part has been probed a million times (maybe literally) and you have a giant computer file of coordinates that can be run thru limit checks or maybe imported into CAD program, whatever.

          The point being that they don't mind hours o

    • by ArhcAngel (247594)

      "This is really about a fundamental scientific breakthrough, many Eureka moments that (Holz) stumbled through over four or five years of research."

      Considering that when I think of a Eureka moment it generally includes some variant of an "end of the world" scenario that sheriff Carter will miraculously albeit precariously save us from I'm not sure I want one of these in every household.

    • by nomel (244635)

      Speckle interferometry? Mid infrared laser with a piezo shift mirror and a decent resolution ccd?

    • software is just defrosted hardware.

      Its possible to take ANY algorithm and cast it in silicon.

      That was one of the tenets in the creation of Forth by Charles Moore.

      It would be possible to implement this using a FAST Arduino microcontroller, maybe with some extra memory, and a few (2+) good (>40kHz) sonar sensors.

      • Software maps to hardware, but hardware does not map to software. You can't code up a laser beam.
        • Nor can you hardwire a targeting and firing sequence without some form of cybernetic feedback mechanism and a state machine.

          But the distinctions are harder to make than you think.

          Where do you cut off the hardware and cut over the state machine?

          Just because a state machine requires some initialization upon activation doesn't mean that it can't be implemented in hardware.

          Just because you were implemented in wetware doesn't mean that you didn't develop a will.

    • >I'm having trouble understanding exactly what kinds of technology this device is using to obtain accuracy


      Handwavium?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 21, 2012 @12:50PM (#40066219)

    ... i need exactly ONE GESTURE to communicate with it.

  • Very considerate to show that you can play Angry Birds with chopsticks. I look forward to being able to play an alternative "Angry Birds" with my single chopstick..

  • by OzPeter (195038) on Monday May 21, 2012 @12:51PM (#40066251)

    Will be the only one around with enough upper body strength to continuously use such a device day in and day out
     
    I should really book mark that Penny Arcade strip.

  • stock pump (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 21, 2012 @12:53PM (#40066285)

    Just want to mention, these guys are currently funding up and looking to put a shine on their company. With the secrecy all you're getting is their own spin, no actual info, and they are very much doing it do create buzz for their funding.

    This is not a tech story, it's a stock pump in disguise. I'm not saying it's a pump and dump, but this is a pump for sure. It seems to be aligned with the Facebook IPO news to try to catch more ears.

    I say this because I heard this news last week through my parents, who have an aggressive stockbroker who brings them endless "get rich quick" stock pumps. And for some reason they don't get rid of the guy even though he's pretty much all the worst things you can think of in a stockbroker. Must be a friend of the family.

    • Re:stock pump (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Missing.Matter (1845576) on Monday May 21, 2012 @12:57PM (#40066331)
      I agree... they're releasing absolutely zero tangible information about the product while accepting pre-orders and developer applications. Seems like they want to bring their investors some numbers on how many people are interested. It remains to be seen if this $70 price is even realistic... and for that matter exactly what kind of technology this actually is.
  • How big an area does Kinect cover again? Nice on the precision, but the effective area is about my seated computing space.
    • How big an area does Kinect cover again? Nice on the precision, but the effective area is about my seated computing space.

      Which is probably the area they're trying to shoot for.

      • Yeah. Very cool, specifically for someone like me who regularly works with 3D visuals. However with all this hype about it being a Kinect competitor, I'd say there is a substantial difference between this and a kinect. That is much the same way that my bedroom TV is cheaper and has resolution as fine as my living room tv.
        • by cupantae (1304123)

          all this hype about it being a Kinect competitor

          Can you point me to that, please? I can't find it.

    • FOV is 57 horizontally and 43, with a maximum range of about 20 ft. I don't know how much volume that is, but it's significantly larger than 8 cubic feet.
      • Re:8 cubic feet... (Score:4, Interesting)

        by vlm (69642) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:23PM (#40066655)

        FOV is 57 horizontally and 43, with a maximum range of about 20 ft. I don't know how much volume that is, but it's significantly larger than 8 cubic feet.

        Come on /., lets do some redneck engineering estimating with VLM down here at the high tech redneck (server) farm.

        Lets wiggle your numbers to something smaller because I'm a lazy SOB and assume kinect only gives you a square of 40 degrees and only 1 foot deep precisely at 20 feet. Kin we all take a swig of grannie's recipe outta mason jar even tho its kinda early in the morning and agree that my grotesque simplification is a profound lower bound? Its going to be way huger than this estimate.

        So 40 degrees up and down is really two rather acute right triangles of 20 degrees at the pointy end and, as you say, 20 feet on the adjacent side. Essentially we wanna solve for opposite side, times two because there's two right triangles, and square it to get square feet, and call it good because we're only looking at the one foot wide layer at 20 feet away (the true volume is way the heck larger, this is just a lower bound).

        OK, sstill with me here? trig, um, 30 years ago, thats what "soh cah toa" tangent is opposite over adjacent. So tangent 20 deg = x/20. Tangent of 20 degrees is about a third... you can either trust me on that because I'm old, or you can GOOG it. Some basic algebra shows 1/3 = x/20 is the same as 1/3*20 = x in other words its a bit more than 6 feet, 6 * 3 being about 18 and 6*4 being too big for 20. So times 2 because there's two triangles means 12 feet. 12 feet up n down by 12 feet left n right at that 20 foot distance is 12*12=144 square feet. So we know it looks at the whole volume (does it?) so considering just that 1 foot shell as a minimum is 144 cubic feet.

        Lets think backwards here to check. So if I imagine around a 40 degree triangle flying outta my eye, and look 20 feet away, can I see the ceiling? Yeah, I guess so. So I probably did the math correctly.

        As a ridiculous upper bound, the upper bound of this pyramid must be smaller than a cube of 12*12*20 feet, right? So its less than 144*20 = 1440*2 = 2880 cubic feet.

        So a kinect looks at between 144 and 2880 cubic feet in volume. This took an old engineering mind about 10 seconds to figure out and 5 minutes to type. In summary yeah its way the heck larger than 8 cuft probably 2 orders of magnitude bigger. But not 3 orders of magnitude bigger.

        • Looking at pictures from a different article, this device appears to sit on the ground in front of the keyboard and faces up. The 8 cubic feet is probably the area directly in front of the keyboard between the screen and the user.

  • I guess this means Mark Shuttleworth was prescient about Unity !#

    (Sorry, Mark.)

  • by cpu6502 (1960974) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:00PM (#40066385)

    0.01 mm * 200 woudl be 2 mm for Kinect. That seems accurate enough to me. It's pretty darn small.

    • by Matheus (586080)

      Not just that... seems lots of the links off the home page are 404. Shady or sloppy or just not ready yet? /.-fail.

      • Re:Developer link (Score:5, Interesting)

        by chill (34294) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:21PM (#40066639) Journal

        Considering they're not one, not two, but NINETEEN versions behind in their OpenSSL software (currently at 0.9.8x) AND they're running FrontPage extensions, I have little confidence in their online process for creating accounts and placing orders. Oh, and they're 2 versions behind on Apache as well.

        Apache/2.2.19 (Unix) mod_ssl/2.2.19 OpenSSL/0.9.8e-fips-rhel5 mod_auth_passthrough/2.1 mod_bwlimited/1.4 FrontPage/5.0.2.2635 Server at www.leapmotion.com Port 80

  • by chill (34294) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:08PM (#40066517) Journal

    Most of their website seems to not exist. The "about", "blog" and "pre-order" pages are no longer there -- if they ever were. Google's cache doesn't seem to have them. Nor does the Internet Archive have a copy.

    The domain was registered with GoDaddy on April 12 of this year. The domain of the registrant (ocuspec.com) redirects to leapmotion.com.

  • by thesandbender (911391) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:21PM (#40066645)
    $70 pre-order for "expected" delivery next year. Article short on details, long on promises. A website where many of the pages don't function. I think I'm better off buying a 2-3 shares of Facebook.
  • Remember those gloves he wore?... well, we don't need them. Amazing technology.

    I wonder if it will kill the mouse.

  • by Compaqt (1758360) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:43PM (#40066951) Homepage

    Usually, they give a discount for pre-orders.

    But their website says it'll be $69.99 retail. So why should I pre-order for that amount?

  • Detecting not only when you physically touch the screen, but also being able to detect where your hands or fingers are even *near* the screen? There could be some seriously cool applications for that.
  • I might be wrong... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Lisandro (799651) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:56PM (#40067187)

    ... but this has "fake" written all over it.

    If they really managed to create an device that tracks multiple objects, in 3D (even when stacked), and with a resolution of 10 microns they won't just revolutionize computers and gaming. I've used industrial sensing devices that cost 100x as much and aren't even remotely capable of such feats.

    • by Hillgiant (916436) on Monday May 21, 2012 @02:17PM (#40067411)

      ... but this has "fake" written all over it.

      If they really managed to create an device that tracks multiple objects, in 3D (even when stacked), and with a resolution of 10 microns they won't just revolutionize computers and gaming. I've used industrial sensing devices that cost 100x as much and aren't even remotely capable of such feats.

      ^^^ 100% THIS ^^^

      For the moment, I am assuming that the original reporter misunderstood the measurement. 0.01mm is REALLY SMALL. We aren't talking about tracking hands or fingers, we are talking about tracking the hairs on said hands and/or fingers.

      • This is not a figure reported by a reporter; this is a figure reported on the Leap website: http://live.leapmotion.com/about/ [leapmotion.com]

        Just about the size of a flash drive, the Leap can distinguish your individual fingers and track your movements down to a 1/100th of a millimeter.

        AKA 10 microns. A human hair is about 100 microns. 10 microns is more along the size of a grain of pollen.

        • by Hillgiant (916436)

          In my defense, wikipedia places a range on the human hair from 17 to 180 microns.

          The vendor's site was /.ed before. It currently does not claim a specific resolution. Just the relative improvement values of 100x and 200x.

          • It currently does not claim a specific resolution. Just the relative improvement values of 100x and 200x.

            The link I posted above still contains the text which I also quoted above. It's still slashdotted but eventually came up. Here is the text of the full paragraph, emphasis mine:

            Say goodbye to your mouse and keyboard.

            Leap represents an entirely new way to interact with your computers. It’s more accurate than a mouse, as reliable as a keyboard and more sensitive than a touchscreen. For the first time, you can control a computer in three dimensions with your natural hand and finger movements.

            This isn’t a game system that roughly maps your hand movements. The Leap technology is 200 times more accurate than anything else on the market — at any price point. Just about the size of a flash drive, the Leap can distinguish your individual fingers and track your movements down to a 1/100th of a millimeter.

            This is like day one of the mouse. Except, no one needs an instruction manual for their hands.

  • If it'll have F/OSS Linux drivers available at launch time, I'll pre-order one. Haven't touch windows for years, though.
  • Aw crap.... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by mark-t (151149) <markt@PARISlynx.bc.ca minus city> on Monday May 21, 2012 @02:07PM (#40067309) Journal

    I was really excited to see this kind of technology until I saw the following on their website:

    Leap Motion technology is a breakthrough in computer interaction, using a patented mathematical approach to 3D....

    Patented? Mathematical? It's bad enough that companies are patenting software that is just obscured math, but now they are effing patenting mathematics itself????

    This has so many levels of wrong written all over it, I can't begin to explain...

    • by chill (34294)

      In the world of encryption, the math behind RSA was patented. So is the math behind IDEA, IIRC. This isn't new.

    • Quit whining about patents. If they're doing it the way I think they're doing it (see previous post), they've solved a very tough problem in acoustic processing. That's a significant invention. Without a patent, it would be ripped off by game console manufacturers and TV makers.

      • by mark-t (151149)

        I have no problem with patents... I *DO* have a problem with patents being applied to things that the patent system explicitly says it's not supposed to be applied to: natural laws, physical phenomena, and abstract ideas.

        Mathematics is almost all (if not entirely) abstract ideas.... that you can sometimes do useful things with it simply follows from the usefulness of logic itself.

  • They have a little wireless device sitting below the screen that supposedly can sense the position of individual fingers of a hand above it. That tells us something.

    One interesting option is using the monitor's speakers for ultrasound and putting some microphones in the pickup. Now you have two emitters some distance apart, and some number of detectors close together. That configuration is powerful enough to image. See "One-handed gesture recognition using ultrasonic Doppler sonar" [ieee.org] People have been fool

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