They say Wearable Tech bracelets aren’t allowed to look too geeky. That it is a bad thing when they are visually obvious and it looks like you are wearing a wearable computer on your wrist. The thing is, sometimes a device is so ridiculously cool that when it comes to it’s features I feel ready to wear it even though it might look like it has come straight out of a Christmas cracker. Especially if one of those features is gesture-active control, a technology that now comes in different usability forms.
“I Have Never had a Problem with Looking like I am Wearing the Future on my Wrist”.
Recently, I came across HIRIS bracelet (Human Interactive Reliable Integrated System), and it grabbed my attention because one of the most important things when it comes to high-tech jewelry is that it is often judged on whether it is fashionable, which arguably is a subjective matter. To be honest I have never had a problem with looking like I am wearing the future on my wrist. For me it is a way of expressing myself and I am happy to say that with the technology enhancements that have taken place in the last 5 years I find that I make less of a fool of myself when it comes to answering the question; “So what does that funky bracelet on your wrist actually do, besides telling the time?” Especially, when it only did just that.
Hiris, who just successfully funded their Indiegogo campaign, have created two waterproof devices, the tracker and the core. The tracker is the one that can be clipped on for example my surfboard to track my cuts and slides or it can be stuck on my body to track the way I move. I can even now gesture control my GoPro camera with gestures whilst I surf, I’m sure you get the picture.
The core tells the time and will keep you up to date with your social media world it also makes me turn my faders while I’m on the wheels of steel. Watching the DJ in the video did make me giggle a little though…. I’m used to operate several knobs and faders at once. Controlling the mids and highs in the sound spectrum might be a little too much to ask I guess.
There were others before Hiris though such as Thalmic Labs. Their gesture control device, called the Myo(Greek for Muscle), let’s you control the world around you by reading the electrical activity in your muscles. This is done by allowing you to control every Bluetooth device it can communicate with, creating a great way to interact with the digital world around you.
Now if this is the first time you are reading about this type of technology, you might wonder how it could really benefit you health wise because others could argue that you could become rather lazy when enjoying the fruits of gesture control. Well, I feel that this is the kind of technology that makes it impossible to understand the possibilities of how meaningful the user experience could be. Maybe it is something that the new generation of young people will learn because it could be something that they will grow up with. At the moment it seems that for many it is a technology that is being utilized in ways that can come across as incomprehensible.
“Forget About Tom Cruise In The Minority Report, He Needed Gloves To Control His Screen”
That all being said, it seems that the gesture control tech industry’s objective is to add an extra dimension to the way people interact with their devices. I see a bright future for companies in the field of gesture tech because you and I will most likely be challenged by how this technology is perceived but once the new generation has grown up with this, it will open up so many new opportunities. The new generations will not be limited by the tunnel vision we seem to currently have.
Now if you prefer to not wear anything when using gesture control, then PointSwitch from PointGrab would be right up your street. It uses a 2d camera that picks up movement of for example your hand whilst subsequently uploading software that it interprets as movement picked up by the camera which then communicates that data to the different devices. Now you might think that it looks like this type of technology is in its incubation stage but looking at what it is offering, it seems to be more mature than what one might think. I am sure that once the enterprise has created demand, it will become convenient to the masses. It will be a matter of time before we can personally say goodbye to a bunch of remote controls… yay
According to Evan Grant, who I like to call the Gesture-technologist, “GestureTech is more of a human behavior, much more than the mouse is used besides a keyboard which has no parallel in nature. It would be fantastic when we are looking at how to create a universal gesture language to move the technology forward. You could even think of Sign language for the hearing-impaired. Imagine gestures being translated into synthesized speech and the difference that could make to the world”.