What Input Device? Just Use Your Arm

This one could be a game changer. [Chris Harrison] and a team of researchers are showing off a method of using your arm as an input device. An arm band worn by the user picks up acoustic signatures created by tapping on your arm with the other hand, or taping your fingers and thumb together on the same hand. They’re achieving accuracies in the 82-97% range but it gets even better. Take a look at the video after the break and see what they’ve done by adding a pico-projector to the arm band in order to use your arm or hand as a touch display.

We liked seeing the concept mice from October, but the future of input devices might already be attached at the elbow.

[Thanks Wilfite via BBC News]

24 thoughts on “What Input Device? Just Use Your Arm

  1. It’s called differential analyses. There was research that could detect where on a fixed pool of water surface impact happened.

    You can use it anywhere to condition anything. Neural network research uses it a little.

  2. Not gonna lie, this is pretty cool. But it seems like it’s not good for people with anemia, looks like you have to hit your arm with a good amount of force. Or anyone who bruises easily for that matter. “what happened to you?” “violent game of tetris.”

  3. I can see the military choosing this to determine bullet entry points to the body and immediately activating automatic tourniquets to stop bleeding … at least for limbs.

  4. @Gert.
    Techno-viking is timeless. At least he doesn’t link you to his myspace.

    This is cool, but i feel like it would only be useful while running (and even then the armband would probably bug the crap out of me)

    1. Actually a tourniquet is actually the first reaction to any sign of blood coming from a limb you have approx. 9 hours before you lose total function of that limb. I recently returned from Afghanistan and let me be the first to tell you I would much rather lose a limb vs my life or have a friend with one arm vs no longer having that friend.

  5. Damn! I literally thought of something very much like this yesterday morning! Except my idea was a subcutaneous sensor on the left wrist, and it was going to trigger things like car door locks, kind of like an RFID chip but triggerable, instead of always ready to send its code. No keys needed, just tap twice and *click*, door’s open.

  6. I can’t see how this would be useful during physical activities though, if it’s sensing a sort of seismic motion through the arm. Maybe it’s just me, but when running, I can’t help but think it would be like hitting all the buttons at the same time with each step. At rest, no problem, nothing else is bouncing, but while running? Everything is experiencing G-forces. Might be better off sensing your fingertip and how it’s interacting with the projected buttons. That’s not exactly “new” technology, though.

  7. I’ed assume that the sensor would have to be “taught” what each user “sounds” like before it could be used, easy enough though, but like Smoker_Dave said it would be great with a cell phone.

  8. It doesn’t matter how old Technoviking is, he still rules you all.

    This is pretty cool but it seems like it requires more equpiment in the armband than just having a cell phone with a touchscreen does these days.

    On that note, I’m ready for the implantable computers with forearm touchscreens.

  9. does any body want to buy a slim ps2 black gots one controller,8mb memory card all chords. in pretty good shape i’ll give a ps1. ps1 gots all chords and controller. so does any on want to buy it??

  10. @michael miller from davenport iowa

    MODS! MODS!!!

    I was thinking full contact Pong. >:D

    That would be a pretty awesome thing, although backSLIDER says torniquets are a last resort. I’m not sure whether a single bullet would require a “last resort” level of action, but you are right in saying that the military will use this for reactionary systems.

Leave a Reply

Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.