Leap Motion – Minority Report Tool

Remember that famous Minority Report movie with Tom Cruise? Year 2002 and everyone fancied that big screen Cruise’s character was working with. What if I say that soon you are able to do the same? Yes, there are already Kinect and Wii with loads of games and I believe, everyone tried it at least one.

But Kinect has one major disadvantage – it is not precise enough. This is gaming console and has a broad yet inaccurate field. It is nice to jump, make strong arm/leg movements, but you are not able to, say, work with 3D modelling.

Leap Motion Controller

And 3D modelling was exactly the reason guys behind Leap Motion decided to create their controller. It just took too much time working with keyboard and mouse, than to move and drag virtual object by their own hands.

The result? Tiny box (a bit bigger, than a flash drive – around three inches by one inch wide), working with both Windows and Mac, costs… $70. Yes, seventy. Company just raised another $30 million, which a good indicator of the project.

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Google Glasses Breakthrough

Google Glasses is an innovative device, which will revolutionize the way we interact with the real world, Web and each other. Basically, it is just a smartphone, built in the glasses.

Picture is transmitted right into your eye, allowing you to view both real and digital world at the same time. Another cool name is Project Glass, though seems most people have not accepted it.

Google Glasses on Sergey Brin

Now, what is known by today? Concept is designed and build by mysterious Google X Lab. Guys behind it are also responsible for different futuristic projects, like self-driven cars, neural networks etc.

Computer is hidden in one of the earpieces and a small projector transmits light beams into your eye. Later versions will allow Glasses to be attached to your normal ones in case you wear those. Control is either by voice, sensor panel on the earpiece or, as latest videos show, by eye movements. System is able to track area in virtual space, which you are looking at, and execute that icon or command. Pretty much the same logic as used for an ordinary mouse pointer. And, of course, it will be able to record everything around you. Silent camera for still and video shots.

Google I/O developers will have a joy to try it in early 2013, while consumer version is planned to be released only in a year from now. Long time to wait, but I am sure, Android developers will spend it profitably, polishing the UI.

Mass production of these devices will definitely change our world and the way we interact with it.

Mass production of these devices will definitely change our world and the way we interact with it.Β And at the same time it is unavoidable as our technological evolvement require closer integration with communication tools. Is it good or bad?

In the coming posts I will try to outline advantages and disadvantages of this upcoming piece of technology. Probably, will even create a new section, dedicated to it. It will be the most prominent symbol of the augmented reality around us.

Walking Military Robot – LS3

Anyone afraid of robots? Well, not those funny vacuum machines or Transformers from our childhood. Reality is that robots now look like computer animation, but you can ride some of them πŸ™‚ And command with your own voice, not a keyboard or joystick.

Military Robot Darpa

This, em, “bug-donkey” is a new prototype by the Boston Dynamics and its codename is LS3. It is capable of carrying 400 pounds (~180 kg) of goods for up to 20 miles (~32 km) and can be guided just by your voice. Commands can be transmitted using radio. Awesome piece of technology.

And I am sure I know your first question – “Is it possible to deploy turrets?”. Seems, no problems with that, though creators (DARPAΒ – Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) avoid this kind of rumours.

In addition, LS3 can move precisely over rough terrain, has the ability to maneuver in an urban environment and stand up after falling. Another useful capability is to become an auxiliary power supply – kind of a huge battery pack. You are able to recharge smartphone and iPad πŸ™‚

DARPA program manager was already very pleased with results of the testing conducted together with Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory (MCWL) and mentioned that results exceeded expectations. Overall, testing is planned to continue through the first half of 2014. Robot is equipped with night vision, of course, and climbing hills is not a problem.

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Virtual Astral Projection

Ever wanted to feel the wind of Everest? Or maybe heat of the blow, while helping teammates to fight the enemy? Soon, in every household πŸ™‚

Folks from the Ikei Laboratory of Tokyo Metropolitan University are developing a virtual body technology, which fools not only your vision and hearing, but also emulate smells, wind breeze and movements. It has been unveiled at the Digital Contents Expo 2012 in Tokyo last October and consists of a special chair, helmet and some weird cables πŸ™‚

Virtual Astral Projection

To speak frankly, system does not allow input (at least at the moment). You have to relax and enjoy someone else’s feelings and not everyone can accept it. You are in other person’s body, so it is more like watching an “extra 3D movie” (these cinemas have funny names like 4D, 5D, 5D etc.), than playing a game yourself and control the result.

Or, it can be called a “virtual astral projection” as you kind of inhabit another person’s body, though cannot do any silly things.

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Ingress – New Word In Game Industry

Ingress Extendiality

As you probably know, Ingress is a new augmented reality game from Google. It is currently in beta-status (since the middle of November already) and access is by invite only. Nevertheless, there are already many players in this battle across the globe and their number increases every day. Now, watch the trailer, it’s worth it.

Legend is the following: there are some kind of aliens, called Shapers, who influence our world through invisible portals and Exotic Matter (XM). Theoretically, this influence is positive; it is “enlightment” and is thought to be responsible for human creativity and talents. But not everyone thinks that we need such mentors and therefore two fractions exist – Enlightened and Resistance.

Interesting fact: full story behind it is still unknown, every day new “episodes” and facts are unveiled on Niantic Project website and what is more intriguing, these stories influence game logic sometimes. Everything looks like some sci-fi TV series, nice job, Google!

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Start Of Something New

Ooook, this looks quite empty at the moment, but as I learn about WordPress customization, blog will be developed further.

What will it be about? Well, main topic for news, discussions, thoughts is augmented reality and how it is going to affect our life in the nearest future. Like it or not, we already face it and it is better to know more, than make wrong decisions.

Also, some occasional posts on everything, regarding integration of human nature with technology (this can be cyborg prototypes, Google self-driven cars etc..), technological singularity and much more.

Stay tuned!

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