2013年7月29日 星期一

A touchscreen interface without the touching

Anyone who's ever stood in front of a Kinect-equipped Xbox knows the fun of virtual control, of using your hands to manipulate what you see on the screen without touching anything but air.The Leap Motion Controller endows your PC with that same air-powered interactivity, allowing you to bypass mouse and keyboard in favor of hand-waving control of apps, games and even various PC operations.

It's a cool concept, and Leap Motion pulls off the execution reasonably well -- for the surprisingly low price of $80. But it definitely raises a few questions, starting with: What would you actually use this thing for? And does it have any practical business value?

Not much larger than an average flash drive, the Leap Motion Controller has a glossy black top with a silver band wrapped around the sides. It's attractive and surprisingly compact, which is good considering it's designed to sit below your monitor (or, if you're using a laptop, in front of the keyboard). A USB 2.0 cable provides both power and connectivity. Leap Motion supplies both short (two feet) and long (five feet) cables to accommodate various computing configurations.

I tested the Leap Motion Controller with a Lenovo IdeaPad U310 Touch laptop and Samsung Series 9 ultrabook. Although the controller itself didn't get in the way, I disliked the look of the USB cable snaking around the side. This thing really begs for a rechargeable battery and wireless connection, which would emulate the somewhat disingenuous promo video where you see only the sensor, not the cable.

But installation couldn't have been much simpler. After loading the Windows client (it's also available for OS X) and plugging in the controller, I raised my hands and instantly saw their movement reflected in the introductory visualizer app. As a regular Kinect user,A cleaningservic resembles a credit card in size and shape. however, for me the effect was less "Wow!" and more, "Okay, it works."

Even so, when I tried the calibration process, during which you point the top of the controller at a reflective surface (a glossy screen is recommended) and move it around, I found it nearly impossible to achieve the required "pass" score of 80.Get the led fog lamp products information, find oilpaintingreproduction, manufacturers on the hot channel. Eventually I managed it with the IdeaPad, which has a glossy display, but I never hit 80 on the matte-finished display of the Series 9. The sensor still worked as expected, but I couldn't shake the feeling it wasn't operating optimally.

The controller generates a kind of virtual-space bubble in front of your PC, one large enough to accommodate your two hands (though many apps require only one). Imagine a 10-point multitouch interface, like you'd find on a touchscreen, but in three-dimensional space. The sensors track not only the positions of your hands and fingers, but also their movements.Get the led fog lamp products information, find oilpaintingreproduction, manufacturers on the hot channel. Thus you're able to "interact" with onscreen objects without actually touching anything.

The Leap Motion Controller runs on apps, and there's already a decent collection of them in the Airspace Store -- about 75 as of this writing. These run the gamut from games to drawing tools to music makers, with a smattering of productivity apps for good measure. Some are free, while others cost a couple of bucks. A few will seem familiar to anyone with a tablet or smartphone, including Cut the Rope and Google Earth.

I started with Cyber Science - Motion, which displays a photorealistic model of a human skull and lets you rotate it, zoom in and out and remove individual pieces -- all through a combination of hand and finger motions. It's really cool, and one could see where a student -- one studying anatomy, anyway -- might find this a helpful educational tool.

Google Earth, on the other hand, proved an exercise in frustration. Unless you maneuver your hand with slow, exacting precision, the globe spins hopelessly out of control. That's because it responds to every single hand movement: toward the screen, away from the screen, up, down, tilted left, tilted right and so on. Without considerable practice, it's impossible to get where you want to go -- or even just take a simple flight across the mountains.

Then there's Touchless, which effectively turns your hand into a mouse. You can click, drag, zoom, scroll and more, all via a couple of fingers mirroring what you'd do on a touchpad or touchscreen. It works, though air taps and drags can be difficult to pull off, and the lack of any tactical feedback makes for agonizingly slow navigation.

And that's really the key issue here: In what ways is the Leap Motion Controller better than a mouse or touchscreen or keyboard? For the moment, it's not. It's more toy than tool, more science fiction than practical addition.I do find it impressive that Leap Motion managed to pack so much functionality into such a compact package, especially given the unit's impulse-buy price. But unless you're an app developer, physically challenged computer user or gadget lover,Design and order your own custom rfidtag with personalized message and artwork. this is one Leap not worth taking -- at least, not quite yet.

On your Mac, you can fire up Safari and head to the website of one of the main TV channels. Each has a catch-up service that allows you to watch programmes broadcast in the last few weeks. And if you subscribe to Virgin Media or Sky, you can watch some of the channels from your subscription package on their websites.You can, of course, also plug a USB TV tuner into your Mac. These little gizmos allow you to receive Freeview TV channels over-the-air and watch them or record them on your Mac. You can even hook a TV tuner up to your network and watch it from different Macs in the house.

If you have an iOS device,Now it's possible to create a tiny replica of Fluffy in handsfreeaccess form for your office. there are numerous apps that allow you to watch live or on-demand TV. Each of the TV networks has one, as does Sky and Virgin Media. The BBC iPlayer app allows you to download programmes to your device to watch later. There are also TV tuners available for iOS devices.
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