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MIT Grad To Make Digital "SixthSense" Open Source

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 4 years ago | from the enhanced-reality-is-the-only-way-to-roll dept.

Software 151

yuveraj writes to mention that Pranav Mistry, the brain behind the innovative "SixthSense" application demoed earlier this year, plans to open source the technology in order to get this to the streets faster. "Mistry’s decision has meaning beyond Sixth Sense. The desire of inventors is always to get their work into the market as quickly as possible. Usually this means waiting for it to be turned into a useful, profitable invention. Mistry is bypassing this by going straight to open source. There is no report on which license he will use, but whichever one he does choose he has put paid to the canard that open source and innovation are incompatible, for all time."

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Imagine the uses for aviation?!?! (1)

mcrbids (148650) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036682)

Not only have the "sixth sense" used for horizontal awareness, but also vertical awareness! Imagine having the instruments being "beamed" into your head so that you didn't even need to look at the dash to know the pitch and direction of the plane?!?

This could be a GOD-SEND to pilots in both military and civil use!

Re:Imagine the uses for aviation?!?! (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30036738)

You may be disappointed to discover that the technology is more like multitouch gestures in the middle of the air with a projector. This has precious little to do with brain-computer interfaces of any kind.

Re:Imagine the uses for aviation?!?! (1)

von_rick (944421) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036778)

True. On a smaller scale you can do something similar with IR LEDs and a Wii remote, and you don't need much of an expertise either.

Re:Imagine the uses for aviation?!?! (1)

Stupendoussteve (891822) | more than 4 years ago | (#30039230)

You obviously didn't watch the video, or the end where she mentioned a SixthSense brain implant.

Pilots are being taken out (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036794)

Too slow, can't handle the G forces etc.

 

Re:Pilots are being taken out (2, Insightful)

greensoap (566467) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036950)

Cannot handle the G forces, I agree. But too slow? Then why do UAV's still have human pilots via remote control. Humans are being taken out because the aircraft are much more maneuverable without a human body blacking out during sustained g-forces. Also, that pesky bit about losing trained airmen when an aircraft is lost.

Re:Pilots are being taken out (2, Insightful)

castironpigeon (1056188) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037028)

UAVs still have human pilots because politicians would freak out and media hysteria machines would have a field day if you had fully automated drones flying around, with or without bombs attached.

Re:Pilots are being taken out (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037756)

Um... We do have fully automated drones flying around, both with and without bombs attached.

Re:Pilots are being taken out (2, Interesting)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037906)

Um... We do have fully automated drones flying around, both with and without bombs attached.

We do have fully automated drones flying around, both with and without pilots attached...

You'd be surprised what a good autopilot can do. Did you know the space shuttle, using 70s tech, lands itself, with the only human interaction being pushing the landing gear doors? No kidding hands completely off from orbit to runway using 40 year old tech?

Re:Pilots are being taken out (1)

Abreu (173023) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038404)

You'd be surprised what a good autopilot can do. Did you know the space shuttle, using 70s tech, lands itself, with the only human interaction being pushing the landing gear doors? No kidding hands completely off from orbit to runway using 40 year old tech?

But...but... what about Hillary Swank heroically landing the space shuttle in Los Angeles in The Core

Don't tell me that movie was gasp! inaccurate!

Re:Pilots are being taken out (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30038604)

[citation needed]

Re:Pilots are being taken out (1)

kbielefe (606566) | more than 4 years ago | (#30039212)

Wow. Parent and grandparent both modded insightful and both completely off base. Where to start?

Current UAVs have about 1/5th the maximum speed of current fighter jets and are purposely designed to be less maneuverable. This is to keep it as close to straight and level as possible even with problems like a sudden gust of wind. I'd be surprised if they ever momentarily pull much more than 2-3 Gs, much less a sustained > 10 Gs. The argument for UAVs has nothing to do with G forces or pilot response times or mass hysteria. They are smaller, cheaper both to purchase and operate, and safer. Most of the "piloting" consists of telling it to go to a certain set of coordinates and send back what it sees. Link latency always gets better, and the exact number is probably classified, but was initially on the order of several seconds. There is still a strong case for human fighter pilots given current technology, and there will be for the foreseeable future.

As for mass hysteria over armed flying drones, we got over that sometime between the Apollo program and the end of the cold war. While not completely immune to failure, drones cannot autonomously designate and destroy targets, and if contact is lost with human operators, there are "Return to Base" failsafes that kick in.

Re:Imagine the uses for aviation?!?! (3, Funny)

thhamm (764787) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037110)

Imagine having the instruments being "beamed" into your head

Exactly! Just like this fluid gets into this egg, but with gamma radiation! (This post has been beamed into your brain by Lightspeed Brand Briefs).

Re:Imagine the uses for aviation?!?! (0)

belthize (990217) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037678)

This could be a GOD-SEND to pilots in both military and civil use!

God already had his crack at developing our senses, now it's our turn.

Re:Imagine the uses for aviation?!?! (-1)

jank1887 (815982) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037712)

I see dead people.

Re:Imagine the uses for aviation?!?! (1)

Anomalyst (742352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038326)

I see dead people.

Even worse, I see dumb people. ... All the time. They're everywhere.

Re:Imagine the uses for aviation?!?! (1)

wjsteele (255130) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038298)

This is already being done!!! Check this out: VirtualHUD [virtualhud.com]

Bill

paid to the canard? (3, Interesting)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036688)

Is it me, or does this expression make almost no sense? Regardless of the intent I don't get why it follows with "that open source and innovation are incompatible, for all time."

Can someone translate this expression about canard?

Re:paid to the canard? (5, Informative)

icebike (68054) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036816)

The writer assumes this single example totally undermines the argument that "Open Source and Innovation are incompatible".

First, its a strawman argument. Nobody has said that innovation is incompatible with open source, at least no one has made a compelling case.

Second its a presumption of importance way beyond the merits of the case. It is neither the first nor the most important open-sourcing of a potentially lucrative idea.

This is Slashdot. You have to expect a certain amount of grandiosity in the story excerpts.

Re:paid to the canard? (0)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037266)

That's fascinating. "paid to the canard" Huh

(goes back to watching Heroes season 3)

Re:paid to the canard? (2, Insightful)

StillNeedMoreCoffee (123989) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037796)

True, but the counter argument played out by the owners of patents and copyrights is that innovation would be dead if there was not stringent FBI level enforcement of I.P. including stringent fines and jail time. Well I guess that followed after those were commodized such that the owners of those properties were not the innovators for the most part, and the innovators are not the major benefactors of their innovation. Altruism is not dead, idea's don't have to always be owned and sold. I think we should go back to copyright only 35 years, then public domain. Afterall Steamboat Willy is now in public domain isn't he.

Re:paid to the canard? (0, Redundant)

icebike (68054) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038248)

the counter argument played out by the owners of patents and copyrights is that innovation would be dead if there was not stringent FBI level enforcement of I.P. including stringent fines and jail time.

For some areas of research and development that is quite true.

That argument, while not always totally convincing, might apply when you are seeking a specific solution to a specific problem, such as a medicine to cure a specific disease. There is a vast investment of time and effort needed for such endeavors.

I'm not sure that counts as innovation in the strictest sense, its more like SIFTING thru pre-existing solutions (chemicals) looking for those that are both effective and non-harmful.

For other areas of research "Innovation" would continue even with out patents, because so much of it is Eureka moments, or serendipitous discovery. So would music and film and books, because authors derive a great deal of reward by the art itself, and by being first movers.

In the present case, this innovation was merely a combination of off the shelf products used in an imaginative way.

They "might" have patented it, but then again they probably stepped on several hundred patents in their research, (since three of the key components are off the shelf products) and the patent fight would have been long and brutal, and probably beyond their means.

By releasing it in open source, they prevent anyone else from patenting it, and still get credit for the invention, and possible consulting jobs in the future.

So its not all that different from many opensource projects where the actual product is releases under (say) the GPL, but the developers get paid by other avenues. Linux is free but Linus gets paid.
 

Re:paid to the canard? (1)

v(*_*)vvvv (233078) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038672)

Parent put it very nicely.

The article is horrible. It's like me saying:

There is no report on who will write the next one, but whoever does he has put paid to the canard that ZDNet and intelligence are incompatible, for all time.

Re:paid to the canard? (1)

tsm_sf (545316) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038832)

First, its a strawman argument.

Which happens to be a rhetorical device, and not the Godwin's Law of debate.

I'm very happy that the young repub... I'm sorry, young libertarian crowd have mastered the identification of this one tool. However, you still have all of these [virtualsalt.com] to go. Better get cracking.

Re:paid to the canard? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30036824)

"put paid to" : ended, rendered obsolete, finished off, destroyed, etc.

http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/293200.html

"canard": groundless rumour or belief. http://cheetah.eb.com/dictionary/canard

Re:paid to the canard? (1)

lennier (44736) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038820)

""canard": groundless rumour or belief. "

Or a duck. Or a forward-swept wing.

Re:paid to the canard? (2, Informative)

mcrbids (148650) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036832)

True innovation takes effort. Effort costs money. Giving away your stuff isn't usually a good way to make money.

"Open source" efforts are generally quite effective at delivering answers to problems that are already well-understood and answered. Witness the whole Open-source UNIX phenomenon - UNIX was an long-standing operating system in the 1980s when it really started to gain steam, and it's downright ancient today. The problems of running a POSIX-style system are well understood.

The BASH shell and environment of today would be quite recognizable by any UNIX developer circa 1978.

Truly new ideas, however, are usually "held back" and kept proprietary for a while during which time the inventor/developer of the idea profits. After a while, the patent expires, and since the patent itself is public information, when it expires, that information is then added to the pool of general knowledge kept by society.

In its basic inception, patents are a good thing!

Re:paid to the canard? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30036958)

True innovation takes effort.

True.

Effort costs money.

True.

Giving away your stuff isn't usually a good way to make money.

Non-sequitur.

This incorrectly implies that the only reason for innovation is to directly make money off them.

As countless Open Source projects (such as Apache, Linux, etc.) have proven - collaborative projects require *less* effort for innovation, and result in better projects for less money.

Truly new ideas, however, are usually "held back" and kept proprietary for a while during which time the inventor/developer of the idea profits.

Only if the inventor/developer's main goal is to sell the "innovation" for a profit. If the goal is reduced costs, it makes sense to share the development burden with others, so that everybody benefits.

Re:paid to the canard? (2, Insightful)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037328)

You missed a step.

True innovation takes effort. Effort costs money

It's more like this:

True innovation takes inspiration. Inspiration/innovation takes effort. Effort costs time. Time can cost money, or it can cost effort.

Re:paid to the canard? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30039036)

Time will always cost /some/ money. Maybe not $50/hr, but if you're not making any money with your time, you're going to starve to death. This could very well be just flipping burgers during the day and coding at night, but then your time becomes more scarce anyway. There's no way to totally avoid economics.

Re:paid to the canard? (1)

Saishuuheiki (1657565) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036842)

'put paid to the canard' This one confused me too, since it seemed like a mistake at first a canard is a groundless rumor / belief 'put paid to' is a phrase meaning "to deal with effectively, to finish something off" So, it means finishing off the groundless belief that they're incompatible

Re:paid to the canard? (2, Informative)

soundhack (179543) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036854)

"put paid" -- to finish something off
"canard" -- a false or unfounded report or story

Re:paid to the canard? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30037136)

A canard (fr) is a duck (en).

Re:paid to the canard? (1)

idontgno (624372) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036910)

"put paid to" [phrases.org.uk]

"canard" [eb.com] (see def 1b)

I've been rightfully accused of highfalutin', but this was pretty impressive. On principles, I don't normally recommend writing to the third-grade level, but there is such a thing as too smart.

Re:paid to the canard? (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037352)

It was an expression I had not heard of before. Still interesting and nice to see slashdot provide the education of the term which I was lacking :)

Re:paid to the canard? (1)

AmazingChicken (1396743) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037654)

I've been rightfully accused of highfalutin', but this was pretty impressive. On principles, I don't normally recommend writing to the third-grade level, but there is such a thing as too smart.

Open source commentators are a serious lot, that's for sure. All this and not a single joke about ducks or their relevance to the other five senses.

Re:paid to the canard? (1)

Score Whore (32328) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037562)

Perhaps you are trolling, but the phrase in question is "put paid" not "paid to the ....". And it basically means the debt is paid and you no longer have to worry about it.

I'm personally more concerned that someone who went to MIT thinks that a technology that interacts with a person is a sense. For something to be a sense, in the accepted meaning of the word, it's going to have to convey information to a person's brain. And for it to be new, it's going to have to not use sight, hearing, touch, taste, or smell.

Re:paid to the canard? (2, Informative)

icebike (68054) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037958)

I'm personally more concerned that someone who went to MIT thinks that a technology that interacts with a person is a sense. For something to be a sense, in the accepted meaning of the word, it's going to have to convey information to a person's brain. And for it to be new, it's going to have to not use sight, hearing, touch, taste, or smell.

If you follow it back to the original presentation (the "Demoed" link, you can see there is nothing even vaguely akin to a sense, although the head of the lab does use that term.

It is more like Microsoft Surface in a wearable form, sans the surface.

Re:paid to the canard? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30039378)

Paid refers to when you receive your salary.
Salary is an old term dating back to the Roman Empire when soldiers were paid in salt due to its value.
A canard is a duck

So as you can see this saying relates to giving your pay check to a duck.

Wait! This could be an error in translation.
By canard he might have mean a young duck like a duckling or chick.

Ah! Of course! By "Giving your paycheck to a chick.", he means going to one of the towns finer pole dancing establishments.

ummmm, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30036796)

no it doesn't.

If further innovation and a product are created then it will, until then this is vapor.

Spoiler Alert: (0, Troll)

hatemonger (1671340) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036870)

Pranav Mistry is already dead.

Re:Spoiler Alert: (1)

idontgno (624372) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036928)

Truly a great America. No, wait, was he?

Never mind, I won't believe it until Netcraft confirms it.

I'm sure everyone thought of this ... (1)

NervousWreck (1399445) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036888)

but this pretty much the embodiment of fears about privacy in the information age.

*sigh* (3, Insightful)

inviolet (797804) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036920)

The sixth sense is accelleration. Sensory data is provided by the semicircular canals and is interpreted as sensations, therefore it deserves the title of 'sense'. Proprioception may also qualify, even though it is a derived/calculated sense.

I give this example to my children to teach the important fact that most every person and most every textbook on Earth can be clearly and demonstrably wrong about something obvious.

Re:*sigh* (1)

jgtg32a (1173373) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037054)

...

I'm not so sure acceleration is the proper way to describe it; because it also tells you when you are upside down

Re:*sigh* (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037190)

So... it detects the direction of gravity... or more accurately, the direction of acceleration due to gravity.

Re:*sigh* (1)

JesseMcDonald (536341) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037250)

"Acceleration" is correct. The GP is taking advantage of the fact that we know from General Relativity that gravity and acceleration are equivalent. You know when you are upside-down by the direction of your acceleration (downward, toward your feet, rather than the more usual upward).

Re:*sigh* (1)

YourExperiment (1081089) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038904)

When hanging upside down from a bar, this sense allows you to tell that you are upside down. You are not moving in any direction, your current speed relative to your surroundings is zero, and this speed is not changing. How does this have anything to do with acceleration?

Re:*sigh* (1)

cowscows (103644) | more than 4 years ago | (#30039240)

There is a downward force trying to accelerate you, it just can't because your feet are attached to the bar. It does, however, accelerate the various fluids in your inner ear parts. Those same inner ear parts detect the movement and your brain interprets that so you know that you're upside down.

But going back to the original issue, gravity is always applying an accelerating force on you. It's just that if you're standing on the ground, the ground pushes back with an equal force (for every action there's an equal and opposite reaction). Intuitively it doesn't seem to make any sense, because it doesn't feel like you're moving, but that force from gravity is always acting on you.

Re:*sigh* (1)

YourExperiment (1081089) | more than 4 years ago | (#30039336)

The force is always acting on me, but it is not causing any acceleration.

Hmm, I fear we are descending into one of those pointless disagreements that only ever happen on the internets. :)

Re:*sigh* (1)

JesseMcDonald (536341) | more than 4 years ago | (#30039262)

If something is "not moving" in a gravitational field, that is equivalent to it being accelerated out of the field. It's one of those gravity-warps-spacetime things. It helps to think of gravity not as a force causing acceleration, but rather as a distortion in the shape of space/time such that objects in free-fall—those with no forces acting on them, and thus no acceleration—follow a "straight line" (constant motion) in the curved space, which merely looks like a curved path (or accelerated motion) in flat Euclidean space.

Think about it this way: Ignoring relativity, if you are in free-fall in a gravitational field then your inner ear gets all confused; you have no sense of "up" or "down" (because there is no acceleration against gravity) even though vectors "toward" and "away from" the center of gravity are well-defined. In the absence of any gravitational field, however, if something were to pull on you feet, causing you to accelerate "downward" at 1g, then you would have a distinct (but inverted) sense of "up" and "down" based on that acceleration. In other words, your inner ear detects your acceleration (relative to free-fall) and not "up" and "down" as determined by Earth's gravitational field.

In fact, forget all I said about relativity. The important part is that the inner ear detects acceleration relative to free-fall. However, it's still detecting acceleration, not orientation relative to a gravitational field.

Re:*sigh* (1)

YourExperiment (1081089) | more than 4 years ago | (#30039418)

I'm still not managing to reconcile that with the definition of acceleration as "a change in speed". Am I just clinging to an incorrect definition?

I would have thought that the inner ear is simply detecting the orientation of the liquid within it, and the force of gravity acting upon the liquid is affecting the orientation that it assumes.

Re:*sigh* (2, Informative)

NervousWreck (1399445) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037066)

True. I showed my mother the video on the TED website and she (a physical therapist) immediately spotted it. She said it should be called the eigth sense. after accelleration, proprioception, and orientation. That last one is the wrong word because I forgot what it was called but I meant the sense of where you are relative to yourself (upside down, horizontal, etc)

Re:*sigh* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30037184)

Actually, you cannot tell the difference between gravity (and therefore orientation) and uniform acceleration. Therefore, acceleration and orientation would be the same sense.

Re:*sigh* (2, Insightful)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038488)

Aren't those just different applications of "touch" ? Essentially I know I'm moving or upside down because I feel the effects of Gravity, and the feeling of those things is purely because of the physical pressure applied to nerves. Or at least my limitted understanding of Biology would lead me to believe that, I never took full Bio in high school.

Wheras Sight is based on light entering your eyes, sound is your interpretation of mini air compressions around you, taste and smell have to do with different recepticals catching different molecules or something like that.

The other senses you guys are pointing out don't really seem to be anything other then pressure sensation on the inside of your body in the exact same manner we do on the outside of our body.

Re:*sigh* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30039104)

Then isn't hearing just an interpretation of pressure sensation as well? Taste and smell would be derivatives of the same "sense" then too, chemical detection. That leaves us with three senses.

Re:*sigh* (0)

thickdiick (1663057) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037272)

I don't see how you can have a sense of acceleration. Perhaps change of acceleration....but acceleration? Categorically NO.
We orbit the sun, but i wager you have no sense of angular acceleration about the sun. The other senses are persistent.

Re:*sigh* (1)

Absolut187 (816431) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037372)

Interesting point.

Is it that we can't sense acceleration at all, or is it that we are accustomed to the angular acceleration of orbiting the sun?

Re:*sigh* (1)

thickdiick (1663057) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037762)

Maybe we could answer that by seeing whether we can invent a machine that can discern said acceleration. But as far as i know we can only calculate it based on observation and acceleration differentials that must be calibrated to a reference point. I think.

Re:*sigh* (1)

Absolut187 (816431) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037426)

Or is it that the radius of earth's orbit is so large that the centripetal acceleration is actually quite small at any given moment.

Perhaps we can sense acceleration above a certain magnitude?

Re:*sigh* (1)

inviolet (797804) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038506)

Or is it that the radius of earth's orbit is so large that the centripetal acceleration is actually quite small at any given moment.

I calculated this once. You weigh about 1% less at the equator than you do at the poles, due to centripetal acceleration. You can already sense acceleration due to gravity at both locations, but a 1% difference is so small, you would only notice it if you teleported from the equator to the pole in an instant.

Re:*sigh* (1)

Hewligan (202585) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037714)

I don't see how you can have a sense of acceleration. Perhaps change of acceleration....but acceleration? Categorically NO. We orbit the sun, but i wager you have no sense of angular acceleration about the sun. The other senses are persistent.

And, by the same logic, we cannot possibly see cars as we cannot see paramecium.

Re:*sigh* (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038010)

I don't see how you can have a sense of acceleration. Perhaps change of acceleration....but acceleration? Categorically NO.
We orbit the sun, but i wager you have no sense of angular acceleration about the sun.

Substitute the word velocity for acceleration throughout your entire post, then you are correct.

Re:*sigh* (1)

Absolut187 (816431) | more than 4 years ago | (#30039118)

A change in velocity is acceleration. Velocity is a vector. So a change in direction (i.e. to go in a circle) is an acceleration.

So we are constantly accelerating (even if our angular velocity is constant).

Why can't we sense it?

The Real Sixth Sense (1)

cryoknight (313161) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037620)

I thought the sixth sense was "Spidey". You know, that tingling one when something interesting is about to happen...

Re:*sigh* (1)

DorkRawk (719109) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038132)

This seems like the equivalent of making a big deal about the fact that Red Hat Linux cannot be worn on your head. You're focusing too much on the name (which is just a name used to draw attention to the "product") and ignoring a much more interesting discussion about cool technology. The number of senses that humans (or any other animals) have really isn't relevant to this device.

Re:*sigh* (1)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 4 years ago | (#30039318)

Equilibrioception is the name for the sense of acceleration and the sense of angular momentum. Technically, they are two senses, with two distinct mechanisms of action. There are also thermoception, the sense of temperature, and nociception, the sense of pain, which is also actually three senses, one for skin, one for bones, one for organs.

lol (4, Insightful)

charliemopps11 (1606697) | more than 4 years ago | (#30036946)

I've never gotten paid for anything I've written. I give it all away. The reward is called "Pride" As a society we simply need to find a way to make sure people like Pranav Mistry have gainful employment while they devlop things like this. As long as I have a decent job that pays my bills and afords me the time to work on software, I will continue to do so. But when employment barely pays my rent and my managers expect me to come in early and work late to the point that I have no time to do anything rewarding at all, everyone suffers because I can not continue to work on things that may or may not be profitable in the end. In my opinion the biggest obstacle in the way of innovation is profit.

Re:lol (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30037676)

And if your innovations are worthless? Society should continue to give you something for nothing? Sounds you just want to be paid to fuck around however you want.

The profit motive is fine. If society values your innovations, you get rewarded for it. If they don't, tough luck.

Re:lol (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30037702)

You're describing fulfillment, not pride.If you get joy out of others enjoying your creation, that's not pride. If you get joy out of praise, that's another thing.

Re:lol (1)

Absolut187 (816431) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037772)

So, you want the government to ________ ??

Re:lol (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30038462)

...make technological gadgets a "human right".

Re:lol (1)

StillNeedMoreCoffee (123989) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037818)

Hear Hear,

Re:lol (1, Interesting)

ect5150 (700619) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038636)

I've never gotten paid for anything I've written. I give it all away. The reward is called "Pride" As a society we simply need to find a way to make sure people like Pranav Mistry have gainful employment while they devlop things like this. As long as I have a decent job that pays my bills and afords me the time to work on software, I will continue to do so. But when employment barely pays my rent and my managers expect me to come in early and work late to the point that I have no time to do anything rewarding at all, everyone suffers because I can not continue to work on things that may or may not be profitable in the end. In my opinion the biggest obstacle in the way of innovation is profit.

I think you misunderstand the idea of what profit is. Re-read what you wrote,

"to the point that I have no time to do anything rewarding at all"

How are you profiting there?

"As long as I have a decent job that pays my bills and afords me the time to work on software"

You are profiting here. But by your logic, if profit stands in the way of innovation, your having a job would stand in the way of your working on this software.

"As a society we simply need to find a way to make sure people like Pranav Mistry have gainful employment while they develop things like this."

Not everyone values this as much as you may. If what he develops is truly valued by others, they will actually pay for it. You will give up some of your money - which came from time and effort on your part - to compensate him for his time and effort. Otherwise, its just talk. It would be as if I say I want a better environment, but I wouldn't want to pay for recycling. This stuff doesn't just come for free - its not some boon society has received - just as your time and effort probably don't come for free. Its fine if you want to work for free, but then the cost is all on you. Most people expect to be paid for their work. If someone wants to come get my recycling without me paying for it, I'm fine with that. But don't come to me later claiming you cannot afford your own bills and "barely pay your rent." That's how you know if I value it or not.

I know plenty of people may disagree, but then you are free to hire him for yourself to keep me quiet.

SixthSense? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30036992)

What is the SixthSense project or do we need a sixth sense to figure it out?

It would have been nice to include a short description in the summary!

Re:SixthSense? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30038654)

It's a camera, a computer, a cell phone and a projector all tied together and worn like something between a tie and a necklace. The user controls the thing via gestures. Here's a demo [ted.com] .

heh. I want this. (1)

Gnaythan1 (214245) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037048)

Ever since watching the sixth sense TED conference, I've been wanting this, but I want the light projected in something you can't see unless you are wearing special glasses. That way the person I'm tagging doesn't know I've just printed on his chest that he's an idiot to avoid.

Re:heh. I want this. (1)

nullchar (446050) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037888)

Exactly what I was thinking. I want the "gargoyle" like glasses from Stephenson's (and others) sci fi. Augmented Reality that visually appears like in the TED video, but is instead projected on the inside of the glasses or onto my eyeballs directly. A few high-quality cameras could map the 3D space so the projection could "wrap around the paper towels" or simply hover above it.

I don't get it... (2, Interesting)

gabereiser (1662967) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037058)

I mean, the tech is cool, don't get me wrong. Having dealt with multitouch for some years now I get it. But seriously, would anyone want to strap on a backpack, attach a bunch of gizmos to his chest, tape colors to his fingers, only to display PRE-PROGRAMMED information? I mean, the video of him is all marketing gimmick. A preloaded video of Barack Obama on the newspaper, clever bit of camera trickery. I don't see this gaining traction anymore than those wearable computers with the little lcd screen in your eye glasses. I would rather have a system that uses Augmented Reality. This "contraption" was deemed open source by it's creator because it's creator knows no one is willing to fork over the cash to bring this to market because it's a terrible concept.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

Aldenissin (976329) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037220)

A terrible concept, so says you. While I agree that much of the video was marketing gimmicks, that is what it was supposed to be, marketing the idea to others. So what is wrong with that? The tech is more than cool, it goes along with several ideas that I have had that I just don't know how to implement. This could help out a lot. It's funny that they use toilet paper, because that is an example that I have had. Imagine if we combined Wolfram Alpha with data about all products and also combined with something like this. I could see that buying this product is better as it is "Made in America", or locally grown, or just last longer. American's buy $5 spatulas from Wal-Mart because they are cheaper, but it they knew at the time of purchase that the $10 one would last 3-5x longer, many would make the better choice. This can really help educate and empower Americans, as well as the world.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

mikemsd (225775) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037308)

Yeah, really, I mean, it's like those people that wanted to put computers the size of a room in their house! I mean, it's not like they would have ever been able to make them small enough to fit in your pocket. Think of all the time and effort that would have been wasted. I'm glad I didn't invest that failed IBM startup.

Re:I don't get it... (2, Interesting)

DeadDecoy (877617) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037394)

It's not a terrible concept, it's simply a solution looking for a problem.

But seriously, would anyone want to strap on a backpack, attach a bunch of gizmos to his chest, tape colors to his fingers, only to display PRE-PROGRAMMED information?

The object he's showing is a prototype and will naturally have a larger form-factor relative to any final product. The reason for the backpack is to have something to hold his dev machine which runs the software. This can easily be put into a smaller computer or micro-controller at some later point in time. And all those gizmos amount to the coordination of multiple devices: web cam and projector, simply because no one has thought to combine the items yet. Again, once there is a market for the combined features, products will probably follow. As for the pre-programmed information, it's certainly true that this performs a limited number of operations, but common, this is only one guy demoing his prototype. There could be plenty of additional operations once this product is open sourced. You just have no imagination

Imagine if such a device was attached to 'the cloud' at some wi-fi cafe. I could be browsing some journal articles projected onto the table, and upon finding an interesting item, send it to a friend somewhere else in the world. Feeling the need to discuss, we could then have a video conference on that table. Once done, I might load up pong and wait until my food is served. A lot of this is a "marketing gimmick" because the uses of such a device have not yet been fully explored. There's a huge pipeline of products and software interfaces that need to be hacked out before its ready for the public, but it certainly holds potential. You just have to make it cheap enough for the average consumer and find that killer app. Personally I wouldn't mind such a device in place of a Kindle/Nook with a decent reference manager, and would probably hack away at the open source to make that happen.

You're probably against this because you have no idea of how it could be useful or popular. But don't worry, a lot of other, smarter people will probably get it done for you.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

WrongMonkey (1027334) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037748)

Don't be such a jerk. There are plenty of reasons to be sceptical about the utility of such a system. The history of technology development has plenty of "clever" ideas that were ultimately dead ends (eg Cue Cat). "Find that killer app" is very difficult step. Your example didn't convince me since none of those activities (reading, email, teleconference) can't already be done as good or better with a laptop or handheld computer.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

gabereiser (1662967) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037892)

don't worry, slashdot is full of jerks. But seriously, I fail to realize how a projected system like this is at all useful considering augmented reality and all. I mean, if two people using augmented reality were looking at an article on a table top, they wouldn't be blinding others by doing so. Last thing I need is the UPS guy showing up at my door shooting 2500 lumens into my eyeballs.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

DeadDecoy (877617) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038322)

I can see a few added utilities of such a device. One is having a potentially smaller carrying size without sacrificing screen size. It might be easier to work with a 2x2 ft projected image on a table rather than a 2x2 in screen. Also, incorporating a multi-touch framework, you could setup an interactive surface for collaboration. Another utility is that it could provide a bridging point between the analog and digital world. That is, the camera part of the device could perform some object recognition and retrieve information to support some cognitive task. Like recognizing a piano and projecting notes onto the keys, recognizing barcodes and pulling up information about the company providing the product, identifying edible plants or dangerous bugs while hiking, etc. While it can use a lot of existing functionality built into the computer, it offers a better framework for processing the natural environment. It's functionality may seem limited or even dubious, but I believe that's only because a lot of the technologies in question are relatively new and still need refinement: object recognition, gesture recognition, gesture-based user interface, reasonable battery life, and visibility of portable projections. It probably won't hit its niche market for years to come as these aspects evolve, but by making the code open source, Mistry probably is speeding up the time it will take until adoption.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

richlv (778496) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038428)

not sure about that. seeing the ted video got me very interested. it would be quite cool to point this thing at a bus schedule to get delays projected on it, or see that there's bad weather at the end of my flight so i can plan for possible delays.
or display prices or availability of a specific product in other neraby shops. or give me on-product "clickable" list of all additives so that i can figure out which ones i don't want to consume (even better - just allow me to preconfigure list of substances to avoid and automatically tell me whether i should buy the product).
or recognise laptop in question and tell me default bios password (if they have such thing nowadays).
or tell me how well a printer is supported in linux when the shop person is clueless.

would all this be trivial ? definitely not. but i do hope that enthusiastic people like from openmko and 6thsense can come up with something awesome.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

JSC (9187) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037914)

It's not a terrible concept. It's version .01 of a brilliant concept. Yes, right now it's clunky and limited but that'll change. Let this evolve up to version 1.0 or more and combine it with things like the optical display contact lenses that are being worked on and you have the world of Vernor Vinge's Rainbows End.

Years from now there's an excellent chance that everyone (except you) will look back at this and marvel at the changes it's brought about. I mean, look at other version .01 devices that have changed the world: Watt's Steam Engine, Trevithick's locomotive, the Wright Flyer, the Babbage Difference Engine.

Don't look at what it is. Look at what it can become.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

gabereiser (1662967) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038068)

if information is displayed through some sort of optical display contact lens, wouldn't it be augmented reality? This prototype would have to evolve into what we already have seen done before. Like I said before, it's a nice concept, just I don't see this thing coming to market. Augmented Reality is more of a... reality.

Re:I don't get it... (1)

gabereiser (1662967) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038094)

Now if he comes out with Augmented Reality that recognizes gestures infront of you then sure. Awesome. Everyone wants that minority report type NUI.

Can't wait to see it being used on the streets (1)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037166)

"I see dead people" will take another meaning.

put paid to the canard? (1)

drdrgivemethenews (1525877) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037176)

> has put paid to the canard that open source and innovation are incompatible for once and for all

Wrong. Depending who you talk to, innovation is either a great idea or a process. If it's a great idea, putting it out as open source says nothing about open source at all. If it's a process, then it hasn't happened yet, because the idea only just now got introduced as open source and there's been no time for any process at all.

------

It's too bad all the people that really know how to run the country are busy writing blogs and running talk shows.

Will I see dead people? (0, Offtopic)

Lilith's Heart-shape (1224784) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037262)

Will this SixthSense device let me see dead people? If so, I don't want to use it. I have enough problems already. I see stupid people. They don't see reason. They only see what they want to see. They don't know they're stupid.

Simple English Slashdot, Please (2, Interesting)

TheModelEskimo (968202) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037294)

he has put paid to the canard

Now there's a new one. *fumbles through idiom dictionary*

Re:Simple English Slashdot, Please (2, Informative)

gr3kgr33n (824960) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037612)

"Put paid to"
Meaning :To deal with effectively; to finish something off.
http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/293200.html [phrases.org.uk]

"Canard"
Meaning: a false or unfounded report or story

Re:Simple English Slashdot, Please (1)

TheModelEskimo (968202) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037770)

+5, Missed My Point

This should drive... (1)

schlick (73861) | more than 4 years ago | (#30037776)

HMD production. If it doesn't some one is asleep at the wheel. For a concept demonstration, projecting stuff onto the real world is fine, but in practice it is horrible. The missing link for effective augmented reality like this is an effective variable transparency head mounted displays. I hope something like this [youtube.com] makes it to mass market sooner rather than later.

Media Lab? Unless it comes from the 1st floor... (2, Interesting)

snsh (968808) | more than 4 years ago | (#30038400)

The stuff that comes out of upper floors of the Media Lab generally don't commercialize well. Anyone remember Charmed Technologies? A couple of grads from the same group tried to commercialize wearable computers - the company didn't survive the bubble collapsing. The first floor of the Media Lab is different; they're more like traditional researchers and work on things like e-ink. But the upper floors generate demo after demo, that look cute and generate press, but not much commercial value.

Watched the video (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 4 years ago | (#30039044)

The device is pretty cool. Of course there's a huge bottle-neck - the communications companies providing your connectivity. I'm sure they'd love a device like this as an excuse to gouge you even more on bandwidth and dig ever deeper into your pockets. So much so that the communication companies would probably make a device like this impractical. Unless you are willing to pay an extra $200/month low low "flat rate".

We need to get rid of the middlemen. Sadly that's not going to happen soon. Too bad such a creative, innovative machine is utterly impractical.

Noble, but ... (1)

tgd (2822) | more than 4 years ago | (#30039074)

As a grad student, MIT owns his work.

MIT does not tend to arbitrarily give away its intellectual property, particularly these days. He may discover, as a lot of grad students there discover, that what they want and what MIT wants are not the same thing. They tend to be very cooperative about licensing the work back to the grad student -- for a share of the proceeds, but cooperative licensing is not the same as being willing to give it away.

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