The BendDesk is a horizontal and a vertical multi-touch display connected as one curved surface. Think of it as a smart white-board and a multi-touch desk all in one. It can be used to sort and edit information, or to play games. Check out “Bend Invaders”, a game demonstrated in the video after the break. When you touch two fingers to the display the two points are used to aim a laser at the oncoming monsters.
The system uses a combination of two projectors shining on the surface from underneath and behind. A series of LEDs around the edges of the display bathe it in infrared light. Three cameras with IR filters peer at the underside of the acrylic surface and detect touches by distinguishing variances in the IR pattern through a process called Frustrated Total Internal Reflection. If you’re interested in more of the math and science involved there are a couple of papers available from the project site linked at the top of this post.
We’ve seen so many displays using the Kinect lately, it’s refreshing to see one that doesn’t.