It’s pretty amazing when you consider ten years ago everyone was carrying around one of those Nokia brick phones that were huge, had terrible service, and barely anyone was texting. The speed with which advancements in technology are hitting the market is overwhelming and exciting all at the same time. Though the iPhone has been, in recent years, one of the leaders in touch-based applications, there have been industry innovations across the board that isn’t exclusive to any one brand or company.
A lot of buzz has been centered on the new iPhone 5, due to the potential inclusion of an exciting new piece of technology, nanogenerators. This means that the iPhone 5 could potentially be powered by the users heartbeat and other forms of kinetic energy in the next few years. This would revolutionize phone-based application and other forms of electronics. It’s not hard to see all of the ways that it could be applied to other areas of the market. This is an exciting new piece of technology that’s got everyone thinking, but it seems that this is a common theme for technology innovation.
Entertainment is often the forum where many of these giant leaps forward take their first baby steps. Microsoft, for example, is developing something called “Skinput” technology. It’s being designed for the Xbox 360 for a more interactive experience for users. It effectively turns people into human joysticks. A projection of options would be placed on the arm, which would basically turn your arm into the remote control. This is based on the idea that mechanical vibrations that move through the body are acoustically distinct, depending on location and resonance.
It’s more of a glimpse into the future of gaming, but its broad based application is nothing short of stunning. In theory, “Skinput” technology would allow users to control several devices like a phone, MP3 player, or other particular devices through the use of an armband.
In the last couple of years there’s been several version of movement-based technology for video games. This has come a long way since the Wii introduced a gaming platform based almost entirely upon the user interacting with the game through movement. Now systems are introducing a hands free system where a person can play a game simply by responding to the information presented on the screen and physically respond to the specific issue. A sensor capturing the movement will then allow the onscreen avatar to be controlled by the user. Microsoft has released Kinect for Xbox. Sony has also released its motion sensor controller. It’s not clear yet whether or not individual platforms will be released based solely around this concept. It’s more likely that this technology will be available as a supplement to traditional gaming.
It’s amazing to think of all of the possibilities in computing software, storage visualization, and other real world applications. It’s strange to think that it has been through the field of entertainment that our lives have been made easier. Logically, it would happen the other way where we would invent things to streamline our daily lives, but it has, for a long time, been the other way around. We’ll just have to wait and see, or just imagine, how these revolutions in gaming and entertainment will revolutionize our lives.