The touch-screen display and three-dimensional display have been combined to develop a screen that users can pinch, poke, and stretch.
The Obake screen is comprised of a flexible rubber sheet laid over a set of actuators. The screen sits under a camera built from a Kinect projector that beams images onto the sheet, and the camera also measures how deep the screen is poked or how far it is stretched. The sheet makes a small mountain when it is pulled, a dent when it is poked, senses friction when it is rubbed, and shows the distortion on an image when it is stretched.
The designers, Dhairya Dand and Rob Hemsley from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Media Lab, call it a 2.5D display.
People already know numerous gestures, but the capabilities of the stretchable surface go beyond those of a typical touch screen. The technology is likely to first show up on tabletop applications, but will eventually make its way to the smartphone.
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