London, June 10 (ANI): An American researcher has come up with a new system that could allow users to control their computers with hand gestures, using a pair of multicoloured latex gloves, a webcam and a laptop.
"Really accurate gloves cost up to $20,000 and are a little unwieldy to wear," The New Scientist quoted Robert Wang, a computer scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Artificial Intelligence Lab, as saying.
Each glove comprises of 20 patches of 10 different colours - the maximum number a typical webcam can effectively distinguish between.
These patches are arranged to maintain the best possible separation of colours.
Thus, the fingertips and the palm, which would frequently collide in natural hand gestures, are coloured differently.
Consequently, when a webcam is used to track a glove-clad hand, the system can identify each finger's location and distinguish between the front and the back of the hand.
Wang said: "It makes the computer's life easier."
After the system has calculated the position of the hand, it searches a database containing 100,000 images of gloved hands in a variety of positions.
Wang said: "If you have more images than that it slows the computer down, and if you have fewer then you don't provide an adequate representation of all the positions the hand can be in."
Once the match is found it is displayed on screen. The process is repeated several times per second, enabling the system to recreate gestures in real time.
The gloves are cheap to manufacture, costing about a dollar, which means gesture-based computing could reach a wider audience, according to Douglas Lanman, an expert in human-computer interaction at Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island. (ANI)