If you are a big sci-fi fan, chances are you’ve probably seen or heard the movie Minority Report. Minority Report was a very futuristic movie but besides exploring the concept of being able to arrest criminals before they commit a crime, Minority Report also featured certain technology features that really blow people away and one of these technology features is the ability to call up a touch screen with your hand and you press icons in the air. In other words, there’s some sort of mini projector that appears in front of you and you just touch this screen, it shows commands and the screen disappears.
Thanks to the rise of Google Glass and wearable wireless, this idea from Minority Report doesn’t seem as far fetched as it did several years ago. The truth is with the right visual inputs at Google Glass, there could be an augmented reality panel created in front of you and you would have a virtual touch screen that nobody else could see. The most exciting part of this is that the touch screen is actually functional, in other words, your wearable wireless device creates and XY sensor field in front of you and all you need to do is touch certain areas for you to activate certain apps. How amazing is that? Well, the technology exists.
There is a non-profit research outfit out of Taiwan called the Industrial Technology Research Institute that has built a projected touch screen. This is a virtual touch screen and it doesn’t really exist but it appears in your field of vision and it looks like it just appears on thin air and floating. Another most exciting part is that it is responsive to your touches— really mind blowing stuff.
We wouldn’t be surprised at all if Google Glass has an app that does this or a competitor comes up with this. As you can well imagine, it needs heavy choreography between hardware and software to achieve this but once you are able to do this and exploit it to its full potential, new virtual worlds literally open.