What's new in games?
| 08 March 2012
We’ve had Wii motion control, Sony’s copycat attempt using PlayStation Move and finally Microsoft’s Kinect system, that can track all body movements and even recognise voice commands.
But the latest developments in game control aren’t coming from a multinational videogames manufacturer, but rather a team of researchers and students at De Montfort University, in Leicester. And it won’t require any ‘limb-input’ at all, instead just relying on eye movement to control the on-screen action.
The project aims to allow severely disabled younger gamers, who can’t use a mouse, keyboard or gamepad, to play computer games. The team has been developing a low-cost system that focuses on eye control using infrared technology.
Eye tracking uses an infrared light to identify where the eyes are looking and can measure the movements as the player looks around a screen. If a player focuses on an on-screen button he’ll be able to activate it by looking at it. Similarly, players will be able to direct a character around a gameworld by looking at certain points on the screen.
The growing popularity of touchscreen technology, complete with gesture and swiping motions found in tablets like the iPad, is an indication of how the way we interact with technology is constantly changing.
Eye control is one step further away from having to type a keyboard or hammer a joypad and who knows, we could be fragging opponents with a flicker of our eyes in a few years time…