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UW Gesture Technology Increases Efficiency of Hands-Free Use

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Doctoral candidate Bryce Kellogg demonstrates the gesture technlogy.

Researchers at the University of Washington say their AllSee gesture-recognition system will allow mobile devices to be controlled by gesture alone for the first time.

Credit: Anastasia Stepankowsky

University of Washington (UW) researchers have developed AllSee, a gesture-recognition system that brings the technology to mobile devices for the first time. AllSee uses existing signals emitted by other electronic devices to read the users' hand movements, and uses up to 10,000 times less power than conventional systems.

"AllSee is the first gesture-recognition system that can work on devices that harvest energy from TV signals around us," says UW professor Shyam Gollakota.

The AllSee device receives and interprets changes in the wireless signals that are reflected off the user. Using a combination of finger and hand movements, an AllSee user can perform eight gestures, which the system can identify with an average accuracy of more than 94 percent, according to the researchers. AllSee also can run on much less power than similar systems because it harnesses the signals put out by other devices, rather than using energy to create its own signal.

The researchers say AllSee could make it easier and more energy efficient to communicate with home appliances such as alarm systems.

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