By now the general public is well aware of touch based devices like smartphones and tablets that take advantage of touch controls on a touchscreen. A recently published patent application from Microsoft reveals their intent to extend gesturing to the next level. Their invention is designed to allow users to control a future TV, Xbox, set-top box, smartphone and/or computer by simply using air-gesturing. According to Microsoft, these future devices would be equipped with a special depth camera that would create an invisible "interaction region" or zone in front of the device's display that would be able to capture a user's instructions via air gestures. Microsoft's invention, if designed intelligently, could one day replace our physical TV remotes.
In our cover graphic noted above, you're able to plainly see that one of the primary markets Microsoft envisions for their invention is a future smart TV or one connected to a device such as an Xbox or other type of set-top-box.
Microsoft's patent FIG. 2 shown below is an example side-view representation of a user interacting with a gesture detection region to provide information to computing device components. Microsoft's invention could easily be seen applying to future banking machines or other kiosk type of applications. Microsoft even hints that their invention could one day be used to interact with robots.
To review all of the particulars of this invention, see Microsoft's patent application 20120268369 titled "Depth Camera-Based Relative Gesture Detection." The patent was filed in May 2011.
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