The next destination on our path to creating technology beyond the current human comprehension; is it a massive super weapon to dominate our rivals? Is it a horde of medical nanobots, which can repair your body from the inside out? Nope. This little box, about the size of an iPhone, is the Leap Motion, a completely hands-free virtual reality mouse. It may not be as nice as the nanobots, but it’s definitely useful for the common nerd!
When plugged into the USB port of your computer and its software installed, this device creates a 3D interaction space around it’s sensor bar, containing an area of approximately eight cubic feet. Leap Motion Inc. , the developer of Leap Motion, claims this device is able to sense and track your individual finger, hand, and arm movements within one hundredth of a millimeter. It can differentiate between fingers, thumbs, and pens/pencils, and react differently depending on which was moved.
Though I personally feel this would take some practice to get used to, Leap Motion Inc. ssures on its website that the Leap Motion is “Intuitive and easy to use”, as well as saying “No one needs an instruction manual for their hands. ” Leap Motion’s inspiration came from 3D computer modeling. The developers felt that the mouse and keyboard were impeding the process, and thus the light bulb flicked on. Leap Motion Inc. ’s target consumer group is “Everyone! ” Several of the examples listed on the official site, linked in the footer, are artists, engineers, gamers, surgeons, and private consumers.
This brand new technology has several possible uses, in addition to bringing Tom Cruise-esque1 control to our computers. Imagine if you will, a surgery room. A doctor is preforming a liver transplant on a patient, and right in the most critical part of the operation, the patient flatlines. The doctor is confused. He did everything right, and he doesn’t know what caused the complication. He turns around and, without removing his gloves, turns on a laptop computer and does a search of the patient’s medical files, to find that he/she is allergic to the particular anesthesia they used.
A quick shot of adrenaline is enough to save their life-thanks to a speedy response. This scenario, though explained in detail by myself, was one of several featured by the Leap Motion webpage. I believe that this technology will quickly gain ground in the market, and improvements will be continued to be created. Perhaps Leap Motion Inc. will expand to be the Apple of the 21st century,2 eh? This might be a good time to invest in some stock, in my opinion (Actually, I attempted to find their stock, and they aren’t listed, at least not yet).
Unfortunately, this is about all the information that’s been currently released on the Leap Motion. There is no Wikipedia page for it yet, and Leap Motion Inc. is being very selective about the information it releases. Currently, the Leap Motion is available for preorder, with an expected release sometime during the beginning of the 2013 year. The Leap Motion’s preorder for $69. 99 USD, and is available on the official website which is, again, linked in the footer. I hope to follow this, and to definitely purchase its stock when it becomes available.