By Ermal Hajrizi
We’ve all seen the guy in futuristic movies like Minority Report that flails his arms around to magically control a projected computer interface, skillfully gliding his arm across the air to move the picture on the screen. And when he’s ready to type, what better than a laser-projected keyboard on the table, ready to sense a human finger. It’s a shame that we likely won’t witness these kinds of technologies in our lifetimes, right? Actually, you’d be wrong. I know what you’re thinking: how in the world can anybody do any of the previously mentioned actions, or anything even close to that? The truth is, two devices – one which you can purchase right now, and the other which is available for preorder – can make this exact situation very, very possible. Let’s take a look at these two miracle devices.
In order to accomplish the synthetic movements and grabbing of objects on a display, you need some sort of device that can precisely sense the intricate motions of the human hands. Ladies and gentlemen, I’d like to introduce you to Leap, a small, minimalistic, rectangular gadget that connects to your computer via USB. Leap has the ability to detect your hand over a space of 8 cubic meters, and translate those movements directly onto a computer screen. In essence, it creates a virtual touchscreen, except with no actual touching. What’s even better is that the technology is backwards compatible with legacy programs, so you’ll be able to navigate Windows, Mac OS X, and various other operating systems, in addition to the numerous programs on your computer. Some examples that have been demonstrated include pinching to zoom on Google Maps, or drawing on Paint with a pencil. The company’s CEO has also made mention of a dedicated App Store featuring apps specifically designed for the Leap. The only downside to Leap is that it’s not yet commercially available. It is, however, up for preorder on their site , with a scheduled delivery between December of this year to January on the next. And the best news? It only costs $70. For such futuristic technology, that’s a very low price.
Celluon Magic Cube
Okay, look, I know the name isn’t very jarring, but the Celluon Magic Cube laser-projected keyboard is the second part of our future computer dreams. As you can see in the picture above, it comprises simply of a relatively bulky device that projects a laser image of a full-sized keyboard onto a designated surface. The machine can accurately detect keystrokes just like a traditional keyboard, except of course using laser technology. The company says that the most important part of using the keyboard is the surface. It says that a suitable surface, such as a flat wooden desk, is vital for precise readings. The Magic Cube is compatible with Windows, Mac, and even iOS devices, and it connects via Bluetooth or USB. The best part is that you can purchase it now, directly from Amazon for just $170. That’s a pretty low price to access the future before anyone else does.
The traditional computer inputs – the keyboard, mouse, and even the trackpad – are long past their prime. It’s time for a new set of gadgets and gizmos that allow us to interact with computers in a more efficient, and even more intimate manner. The combination of the Leap and Magic Cube is the perfect solution for the modern day renaissance man who is determined to use technology of the future. And for a grand total of about $240, jumping into the future isn’t as cost prohibitive as we once thought. So what are you waiting for? Go order this stuff and and start waving your arms and shooting lasers. Trust me, it’ll be worth it.