Imagine being able to move the cursor on your computer screen by turning your head or pointing your finger instead of using a mouse. Everyday computer tasks such as word processing and spreadsheets would become easier by not having to switch from the keyboard to the mouse. New applications would be possible once the user isn’t tethered to the computer via a mouse or joystick.
Dot On, Inc., Issaquah, has developed a new cursor control device called the “Dot Tracker”. This prototype system uses a sensor, connected to the computer, that optically tracks the position of a small dot affixed to an object such as a wireless-pointing device or directly to the head or finger of the user. The movement of the dot directs the position of the cursor on the screen. Potential markets for “Dot Tracker” include business applications, PC games, children’s programs, and applications for the disabled.
Using specialized equipment at UW’s Human Interface Technology Laboratory, Suzanne Weghorst is performing an analysis of head movements exhibited by average computer users during desktop applications. The results of this Entrepreneur’s Access project will determine the precise refractive optics required for the head or eyewear mounted version of the product.
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