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Some of the Weirder Ideas From CHI 2009

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the electrooculography-for-100-points-alex dept.

Input Devices 43

An anonymous reader writes "Technology Review has a roundup of some of the weirder ideas on show at last week's Computer-Human Interaction conference in Boston. They include a trackball that heats up as you roll over different parts of an image, a pair of goggles that track eye movements using electrooculography, and a miniature robot with a cellphone for its head."

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Cell phone for a head? (2, Funny)

homey of my owney (975234) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570303)

I know that guy!

If it's a speakerphone (1)

John Guilt (464909) | more than 5 years ago | (#27571487)

...it can yell 'Eat lead, sucker!!!' in a robotic monotone just before he shoots you.

Memory matches... (3, Insightful)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570323)

Officially dubbed "Stupidest Idea Ever".

And no, I'm not going to explain. You'll just have to RTFA. :p

Re:Memory matches... (1)

chebucto (992517) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570507)

Seriously.

I'd expect that sort of thing from Tosser's School of Art and Wankery, but not MIT.

Not to mention the fact that their experiment was done for the greater part of a century, with film-based cameras.

Re:Memory matches... (1)

SalaSSin (1414849) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570517)

Not to use by distracted people, they'll take pics with their match, and light their cigarette with their Nikon...

Re:Memory matches... (1)

Tx (96709) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570527)

I dunno. They would take all the hassle out of creating those "this message will self destruct in..." type of messages for secret agents, something that I'm sure we all have to do regularly...ok, maybe it is just dumb.

Re:Memory matches... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27570581)

Wow. What a bizarre concept. That may be the most unique concept I have seen in awhile. Not a good idea but definitly odd. Certainly gets the non-obvious part of a patent.

Re:Memory matches... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571337)

Well, then have a look at the new Opera 10 which has Face Gestures [opera.com] !

Re:Memory matches... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27572199)

mmm...

to ruin it or not to ruin it... what the hell

April's Fool!!!!

Re:Memory matches... (1)

MadnessASAP (1052274) | more than 5 years ago | (#27572529)

Oh jesus christ I thought they were serious for a minute.

Re:Memory matches... (2, Funny)

Chabil Ha' (875116) | more than 5 years ago | (#27572195)

What makes it the stupidest idea ever is the whole reason things have gone digital: cost. Just because storage media costs five one hundredths of a cent to store a single photo doesn't mean that the photo (or the memory) itself is meaningless. It's like we took a time warp to the 60s with 2009 technology, passed around the 'peace pipe', started living at a communal with digital cameras, and started farting out crazy ideas like this. Wake me up when the trip is over!

Why (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27570345)

is this article red?

Re:Why (1)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570573)

Why

is this article read?

FTFY.

Come again? (4, Funny)

hansamurai (907719) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570405)

ball that heats up as you roll over different parts of an image

There's a joke in there somewhere.

Re:Come again? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571841)

It's in your other hand.

Re:Come again? (2, Funny)

verbalcontract (909922) | more than 5 years ago | (#27573777)

ball that heats up as you roll over different parts of an image

There's a joke in there somewhere.

Hmm... yes... If only the word "ball" were a euphemism for a part of the body that would be aroused by certain types of images.

And if only computers were known for easily being able to access those types of images.

And if only this story were to come across a large body of individuals who both possess this part of the body, and who frequently used computers to download arousing images, and have a certain je ne sais quoi for pointing such a collation.

Mmm... but I guess that could never be.

Obligitory (1)

Rik Sweeney (471717) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570459)

a pair of goggles that track eye movements

If this doesn't warrant an "in Soviet Russia" comment I don't know what does.

Re:Obligitory (1, Funny)

Arthur Grumbine (1086397) | more than 5 years ago | (#27571047)

In Soviet Russia, the goggles - they do nothing!!

Re:Obligitory (0, Redundant)

pisto_grih (1165105) | more than 5 years ago | (#27571657)

In Soviet Russia, eye movements track you? That's usually the case. Nothing to see here. Move along please.

Beowulf is a better obligatory (1)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 5 years ago | (#27571873)

These are already in production use: the movie Beowulf used them to capture the eye-movements of the actors, so clearly the technique is mainstream.

So you could say "imagine a beowulf cluster" of these tracking you.

Is it because they are now reduced to a cheap goggle form or something that makes this news?

Re:Obligitory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27574983)

Translation: "I tried to come up with a Soviet Russia joke, and failed utterly."

Re:Obligitory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27576185)

In Soviet Russia, the utterly fails YOU!

Waiting for some DIY desktop VR instructions... (1)

distantbody (852269) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570645)

...like this [youtube.com] . It's cheap, it has more than just novelty value.

Re:Waiting for some DIY desktop VR instructions... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571855)

Meh, that's not really the same thing, some features overlap but not many...

Hot and Cold Mouse (1)

wjousts (1529427) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570653)

I can see this being a great idea, right up until somebody gets horribly burnt by it. Maybe it could have uses in porn?

Re:Hot and Cold Mouse (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27570823)

Teledildonics meets hot palm porn.

Unless you want to use the trackball with your anus.

Tracking Eye Movements (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570781)

Does anyone know of a good Open-Source eye tracking system? Something using high-res cameras would be dandy. Ideally I'd just end up with an eyetap that would work in all situations, but god knows how far anything like that is from production, and I don't want to walk around looking like a hobby shop exploded in my face.

Re:Tracking Eye Movements (3, Funny)

djupedal (584558) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570927)

> "...I don't want to walk around looking like a hobby shop exploded in my face."

Would you settle for appearing as if you fell through the front window of a Radio Shack @ the mall? I'm sure I have some gift cards around here somewhere...

Re:Tracking Eye Movements (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27570993)

You might want to look at opengazer

http://www.inference.phy.cam.ac.uk/opengazer/ [cam.ac.uk]

For a while development had been abandoned but that disclaimer has now disappeared from the website so I imagine someone is working on it.

The same people created the dasher text input system which is really worth having a look at as an example of innovative input methods.

http://www.inference.phy.cam.ac.uk/dasher/ [cam.ac.uk]

Re:Tracking Eye Movements (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571347)

Does anyone know of a good Open-Source eye tracking system?

Try this one...

"xeyes &"

Re:Tracking Eye Movements (1)

flux (5274) | more than 5 years ago | (#27573521)

I found this some time ago:

    http://directory.fsf.org/project/cveyetracker/ [fsf.org]

which is apparently abandoned. But only 4 years ago :).

Uh huh... (1)

djupedal (584558) | more than 5 years ago | (#27570859)

Sounds like a bunch of FaceBook losers [livescience.com] ...er....users... to me.

my idea was rejected (5, Funny)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 5 years ago | (#27571283)

I tried to enter a device in this event, but they wouldn't let me.

My idea was (and the prototype worked pretty well) to create a metal leg from the knee down the bolted under the user's desk and USB cables to connect to the computer. When the user did something stupid, fell for a phishing scam, responded in earnest to a 419 scam, downloaded a virus off a website, etc, the foot's lever action kicked in and kicked the user square in the giblets.

My test run of 16 users in Topeka had "smashing" (and painful) results.

Sadly, they decided not to let me enter. There is a silver lining though, as there is a small-ish "kick me in the jimmy while I'm watching donkey porn" fetish market out there that is in love with my product.

Re:my idea was rejected (1)

maven_johnson (870682) | more than 5 years ago | (#27572911)

I tried to enter a device in this event, but they wouldn't let me.

I thought "entering a device" was the whole point of this event.

Re:my idea was rejected (1)

mewsenews (251487) | more than 5 years ago | (#27573365)

I'm not sure how you got access to my research, but I'm not going to let you steal my idea for the interface to my next-gen MMO. Expect a call from my lawyers.

Pair eye tracking with contacts? (2, Interesting)

EchaniDrgn (1039374) | more than 5 years ago | (#27571739)

Has anyone tried to pair some of these eye tracking softwares with contacts? I know it might be a bit more niche since not all us geeks wear Glasses/Contacts, but if you can get over the touching your eyes part I'm sure "blank" contacts could be made. Would be interesting to have a pair of glasses with small cameras that just tracked the marks on the contacts. I know my current contacts have marks on the outer edge of the contact with the makers name, perhaps this could even be made with some sort of non-visible spectrum reflective material. Then there's the problem of what light wouldn't cause eye damage being shone into the eye at that range.

Maybe someone will steal this Idea. :-)

Re:Pair eye tracking with contacts? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27572959)

Your eye already has markings with can be tracked.

Article was pure fluff (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27571825)

The article never mentioned the most important aspect of these devices: what is the application for porn?

Wow? (1)

flameproof (1460175) | more than 5 years ago | (#27572143)

That was seriously useless. Talk about redundant [wikipedia.org] .

Goggles that track eye movements? (0, Redundant)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 5 years ago | (#27572227)

Those won't work. Any Slashdot reader can tell you: The goggles! They do nothing!

(Yes, even I am groaning as I'm posting this.)

wah? (1)

caincarter (1465247) | more than 5 years ago | (#27572537)

I thought it was called HCI now. I heard people made a fuss about the computer coming before human. Meh, I like CHI better anyway.

Re:wah? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27573373)

If you are going to talk about the field, then yes, it is HCI. However, the conference (and the ACM SIG that hosts it) is CHI. Just one of those cultural things...

Eye-tracking (1)

omuls are tasty (1321759) | more than 5 years ago | (#27579253)

The most impressive eye-tracking device I've ever seen is Tobii [tobii.com] . It's based on infrared sensors which detect the movement of your eyes. I was pretty much amazed with the accuracy of the device, much better than I thought it would be.

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