Multi-Touch Interaction Research

When two friends on opposites sides of the country independently emailed me links on the same day to the same cool video clip, I knew it must be worth checking out. And it is – it’s a demonstration of “Multi-Touch Interaction Research – a touch-screen technology based on a “frustrated total internal reflection sensing technique” (no, I don’t know what that means either). But check out the video demo at either of these two links (same demo, just different pages).

Multi-Touch Interaction Research at their NYU home page (its downloadable there), or:

Streaming version at YouTube.

The future of computing? Maybe – It would breathe new life into the tablet PC market I bet. Especially if they can get the system to be able to determine which finger you are using at any time, so that commands/modes can be mapped to certain fingers. I can see this one day making the computer mouse look as cumbersome as punched paper cards.

UPDATE: But not everyone agrees that it is a useful technology – see the discussion on the demo here. Personally, as a Wacom tablet user/lover, the uses for this are quite obvious to me,and there will doubtless be less obvious uses and improvements over time (the computer mouse did not always have a scroll wheel).