Okay so imagine you're designing a remote control for a two-legged robot. The task, basically, is to translate those walking motions into the controller movements--and usually, these two don't have any intuitive relationship with each other. That's why it takes so long to learn how to control a videogame, for example--the language on the screen (or in the robot) is different from that in your hands. Now, you can solve that with gestural interfaces, but there's a simpler way.
Researchers at Keio University recognized that problem, and designed a solution that simply requires an iPod. "Kiwalky" simply uses the iPhone's touch screen, and you control the robot simply by walking with your fingers. A kicking motion makes the robot kick, and a tapping motion makes it jump. Amazing potential for toys and games, right?
The project is set to debut in December at SIGGRAPH Asia.