Thursday, July 08, 2004

Toys for Boys

How very Minority Report
Researchers from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have devised a videoconferencing system that comes a step closer. Facetop superimposes transparent images of a computer's desktop over video images of the user to allow the user to look at the video and desktop at the same time.

The video shows a ghostly mirror image of the user so that when he points, his video reflection appears to touch objects on the screen. The system tracks fingertip position in the video to allow the user to control the mouse pointer.

As it turns out, the human visual/brain system "seems to be quite good at paying attention to one and ignoring the other, depending on whether you want to see the user or the desktop information," said David Stotts, an associate professor of computer science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

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