Next month Toshiba [OTC: TOSBF] will release a new iteration of its Qosmio notebook called the G55, which is rumored to have a host of nifty specs and a reasonable $1,550 MSRP. Among those specs is a massive 18.4-inch display running at 1680×945, powered by a GeForce 9600M GT video card and an Intel Centrino 2 CPU with 4GB RAM to speed things along. In addition to a nice hardware package, the G55 will sport something Toshiba is calling the “Quad Core HD processor,” which is most likely a commercial name for the Cell-based SpursEngine, a technology which serves as the engine for a variety of cutting-edge multimedia tools and effects baked into the notebook.
One such feature is the camera-based visual gesture control system, which allows users to control the machine via hand gestures. Aside from the obvious problems — the system is useless for people that lack steady hands, or full hand and wrist mobility — early reports are calling the technology clumsy and frustrating. That said, the G55 will be an interesting proof of concept, and a heretofore unexplored alternative to the burgeoning trend in multi-touch operation, which would allow users to manipulate objects on a touchscreen using more than one finger or hand. The prospect of using two hands moving in mid-air to control the machine (without gunking up a touchscreen) is encouraging, but seems as if it could become tiring in practice. CD