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How Microsoft Researchers Might Invent a Holodeck


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Skinput bracelet

A Skinput bracelet can sense how the user is moving their hand and fingers, and wirelessly transmit the data to a computer where it can manipulate a video game.

Credit: Courtesy of Microsoft Research

Microsoft researcher Scott Saponas is developing Skinput, a bracelet of wearable electrodes that can sense how the user is moving their hand and fingers, transmitting the data wirelessly to a computer where it can manipulate a video game. The key is developing a sensor that can determine which electrical signals correspond to which gestures.

Microsoft's Andy Wilson helped start the development of tabletop displays, and now he is working to extend the computer interface from the table throughout the entire space around it. This Light Space project utilizes three cameras that can record three-dimensional data by sensing how far away each point is. In Light Space, users can manually change photos and video windows on a tabletop.

The Wedge, developed by Microsoft's Steven Bathiche, is a new technology that manipulates the light from a liquid crystal display projector, making it big or small depending on which end the light is put through. Since the Wedge works in both directions, it can create an image that can "see" the user at the same time that it is displaying an image.

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