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Microsoft's Prototype Hand Gesture Sensor Could Make Kinect More Accurate

Jonathan Lester
Digits, Microsoft, Motion Control, Prototype

Microsoft's Prototype Hand Gesture Sensor Could Make Kinect More Accurate

Microsoft's Cambridge research division has unveiled a gloveless prototype device that provides incredibly precise hand gesture recognition, which could theoretically be used to enhance the accuracy of the Kinect sensor amongst wider applications.

Digits, a wrist-worn sensor bracelet, uses infrared sensors to detect the wearer's finger positions in real time, using the data to build a "fully articulated hand skeleton." Naturally this has major implications for computer interaction in general, perhaps when it comes to fine manipulation in hazardous conditions, but it's also capable of controlling televisions, smartphones and, inescapably, videogames.

When coupled with the Kinect sensor, Digits could potentially drastically enhance the precision of peripheral-less motion control - and lead to vastly more immersive and complex gaming experiences. The developers and engineers apparently want to reduce its volume down to roughly the size of a wristwatch, which would certainly be convenient. As a prototype, though, a retail version would probably be many years away - and frankly, I'd rather they prioritise its wider applications (such as wearable computing, revolutionary UIs and remote manipulation) first.

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