DailyDirt: Beyond Simple Mice And Touchscreens

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

The keyboard and mouse combination has been a standard for several decades now, but there's always room for some improvement. Touchscreens are a nice way to interact with phones and tablets (and phablets), and maybe someday we won't be able to keep our greasy fingers off our 5K desktop and laptop screens either. We're always looking out for interesting input devices, and here are just a few other input methods that might get popular. If you'd like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post via StumbleUpon.

Filed Under: digital crown, gesture recognition, input devices, sensors, smart ring, smart watch, stylus, touchscreens, ui, wearables


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  • icon
    Mason Wheeler (profile), 10 Nov 2014 @ 5:10pm

    Someone's been watching too much Minority Report

    Touchscreens are a nice way to interact with phones and tablets (and phablets), and maybe someday we won't be able to keep our greasy fingers off our 5K desktop and laptop screens either.

    Yeah, a big touchscreen looks great on a movie screen. In real life... not so much. There's a very good reason why every interface device that's ever actually been successful can be used, in its entirety, with the hands in a resting position, minimal wrist and elbow movements, and zero shoulder movement.

    (And just to head off nitpickers, yes, the Wii remote violates this principle for some games, and yes, it's incredibly successful. Same with certain highly specialized video game controllers, such as the Guitar Hero guitar. These are highly specialized devices, though, that are not used for extended periods, nor for general-purpose device control. The standard usage of the Wii remote involves minimal movement; games where you swing it like a tennis racket are the exception.)

    The thing about holding your hands up and moving them around in broad, sweeping gestures is that your arms will get tired surprisingly quickly. Go ahead, try it. Watch Minority Report and watch what they're doing on the screens, then try to do the exact same thing on a wall. See if you can keep it up for even ten minutes. But you can sit at a keyboard-and-mouse all day and not get worn out.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 11 Nov 2014 @ 3:52am

      Re: Someone's been watching too much Minority Report

      It's a shame that no one of Mason Wheeler's wisdom (if not simple horse-sense) was behind the wheel at Microsoft, which rammed that horrible Windows 8 down everyone's throat as if force-feeding a Guantanamo prisoner.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Paul Renault (profile), 11 Nov 2014 @ 4:56am

      Re: Someone's been watching too much Minority Report

      Not to mention, a crew of people whose job it is to keep those screens clean, clean, clean, between takes.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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