Leap Motion

Minority Report 3-D gesture-sensing interface now a reality: Leap Motion

Friday, January 18, 2013 by: J. D. Heyes
Tags: Minority Report, gesture sensors, Leap Motion

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(NaturalNews) The gesture-sensing interface used by Tom Cruise's character and others in the movie, "Minority Report," was definitely a futuristic application when the film debuted in 2002. But now, thanks to one software company, that technology is now close to becoming a reality.

Leap Motion, which is a 3-D motion sensor that allows its users to interact with computers just by gesturing through the air, has recently secured an additional $30 million in funding to further develop the product, the company says.

In addition, Leap announced that computer manufacturer Asus will become one of the first makers to bundle Leap's technology directly into some of its notebooks and computers. In fact, The Los Angeles Times reported, "the new products with Leap Motion devices pre-installed should be available later this year."

This is the year

Says Leap Motion's CEO, Micheal Buckwald, in a statement, "Leap Motion is poised to fundamentally change human/computer interaction, and this new funding will help us bring our technology to the mass global market," he said. "With this influx of capital, coupled with the major OEM partnership we also announced today, we're ready to make 2013 the year of the new interface."

The company introduced its motion controller in May. The device is an iPod-sized box that sits in front of your computer and gives you about eight cubic feet of 3D interaction space, according to published information.

"Motion's technology can track movements to 1/100th millimeter -- smaller than the tip of a pin -- with no visible lag time. The Leap Motion controller has a 150-degree field of view, and tracks individual hands and all 10 fingers at 290 frames per second," says the company's statement.

Ultra sensitivity

If you're standing within the controller's range, the Leap Motion device can track all movements with a sensitivity that programmers say is 200 times that of Microsoft's Kinect or Nintendo's Wii game. It's even sensitive enough to track different finger movements.

"When we first invested in Leap Motion, it was a couple of brilliant minds with a revolutionary technology," said Peter Bell, general partner at Highland Capital Partners. "In just months, it's blossomed into a fast-growing company on the brink of completely reinventing the way the world interacts with technology. Leap Motion is here to stay."

The controller is ready to for pre-order at a price of $69.99 on the company's website. Earlier last year Leap officials said they hoped to be able to begin shipping the device to consumers by the beginning of 2013.

Already, the company is working on new applications for its device.

"Leap Motion has sent more than 12,000 free developer units to developers around the world, and the Leap Motion controller will ship with an application store where developers can monetize their work and consumers can discover new uses for Leap Motion," said the statement.

The San Francisco-based firm was founded in 2010 by Buckwald and David Holz.

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