A decade ago, audiences were as wowed by Tom Cruise's gesture-based computer navigation as they were by the film's plot. Below, a look at ways that tech has taken hold—and how silly it may require users to look.
SceneTap uses facial-detection technology to give users information on a bar's male-female ratio, average age, and the total number of patrons. But while consumers may jump at the opportunity to find out which bars have the best chances of yielding a good time, it's the bar owners who are likely to see most value from the system.
"The Minority Report interface" is a pop-culture (and design) phenomenon that persists even as more practical gestural-interface prototypes enter the marketplace. But in order for Tom Cruise-like hand acrobatics to ever have a chance of replacing the ol' mouse and keyboard, the gestures themselves have to be as natural as speaking with your hands already is.
Kinect hacks are often impressive, revealing how powerful the Microsoft device actually is. A new one that combines 3-D modeling, data gloves, and gesture control, hints at how you may control your PC in the near future.