We’ve already had a taste of mouse-free computing. Touchscreens on our smartphones and tablets allow us to search the Internet, compose e-mail messages, send texts, and stream movies, all without using a mouse. So what do you think this will lead us to down the road? How will we interact with our computers in the coming decades? After we ditch the mouse, what comes next?
Gesture sensing is something most gamers are familiar with. The PlayStation and Wii both employ this technology. By using a wireless remote you can control the game using only body movements. This technology has not been perfected or widely applied to computing but think of the possibilities. Perhaps in the foreseeable future we will boot our computer by putting on a sensor bracelet and every little gesture we make will perform a task on our computer!
Multi-touch technology is another interactive innovation that is being utilized in a few common devices, namely, tablets, e-readers, and smartphones. This technology allows users to tap icons to open program, pinch or extend their fingers to zoom or minimize the images on their screens. Because this is a relatively new technology it’s still being refined. How do you think this will be used in the future to allow us easier navigation around our computers?
Another possibility for controlling computers is vocal recognition. This technology already exists and is quickly gaining in popularity as developers work out the kinks. One of the popular common vendors is Dragon NaturallySpeaking. Vocal recognition technology has a ways to go before it is perfect, but technologies improve so rapidly these days that I don’t see it being a long time before voice-command functionality becomes standard in every devices.
While there are lots of ways computing can be improved through hands free navigation technologies. It’s likely we will not see the tried and true mouse disappear for some time.