It's hard sending a text message with arms full of groceries or while wearing winter gloves. Voice control is one alternative to using your fingers, but researchers are also working on other hands-free ways to control mobile devices. A team at Dartmouth College has now created an eye-tracking system that lets a user operate a smart phone with eye movement.
Eye tracking has been used for years, primarily as a way for people with disabilities to use computers and to enable advertisers to track a person's focus of interest. "The naturalness of gaze interaction makes eye tracking promising," says John Hansen, an associate professor at the IT University of Copenhagen in Denmark who works on gaze tracking. "Most of the time we are looking at the information we find most interesting."
Mobile eye tracking could be useful for all mobile phone users, says Dartmouth professor Andrew Campbell, who led the development of the new system, called EyePhone. But so far, little work has been done on eye tracking on mobile phones. This isn't surprising--keeping track of a gaze via a mobile phone is much more challenging than on a desktop computer because both the user and the phone are moving, and the surrounding environment is so changeable.
From Technology Review
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