A new technology based on the sensor found in many computer mice makes interacting with a MP3 player or mobile phone as easy as flicking, twisting or tapping the device.
Called Minput, the technology could find its way into a next-generation smartphone within a year, the researchers said.
Using gestures to interact with mobile electronics isn’t new. Rotating an iPhone, for example, changes the display orientation from portrait to landscape. But the type of sensor responsible for this in the iPhone--c alled an accelerometer--has a “very low resolution,” said Chris Harrison, a Ph.D. student at Carnegie Mellon University who developed the method with Scott Hudson, a professor at the university.
“They are good for things like orientation, but very poor for things like cursor control,” Harrison said.
But optical sensors, which are used for detecting motion in many computer mice, have extremely high resolution--enabling such functions as scrolling through songs and browsing through photos on smaller devices.
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