Remember the Power Glove from Nintendo? The gaming controller was really futuristic looking back in the late 1980s. The concept of a wearable controller hasn't gotten much traction since then. Now, Microsoft Research has come up with a new concept that reminds us of the Power Glove, but without the actual glove.
The Next at Microsoft blog reveals the project, called Digits. Basically, its a device that a person wears on his or her wrist that can sense the movement of a person's fingers. The video that shows off Digits says that the device was made from off-the-shelve items, including a infrared camera, an IR laser, an R diffuser for illumination and an inertial measurement unit.
The end result is that Digits can sense the movement of the fingers on a person's wrist. There are obvious gaming applications for this device, such as being able to use your finger to shoot at targets in a first person shooter game. However, the video shows some other uses for Digits, including being able to zoom and and out of a touch screen-based mobile app.
The video even shows how Digits could control the volume level of a smartphone while that device is still in a pocket just by the movement of a person's fingers, combined with some form of "wearable vision technology" (i. e. glasses similar to Google Glass). As usual with anything from Microsoft Research, there's no way to know if this project will ever lead to a real commercial product launch.
Source: Next at Microsoft