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The Future of Computing: Power to the Finger

Category: Hardware Published on Thursday, 11 May 2017
Have you ever sat in the darkness of a movie theater and watched in envy as future geeks swipe holographic images left and right to reveal maps and interact with the Internet to track down crooks?
That future is closer than you think.
The folks at MaxusTech have developed a pint-sized device called Welle ($129) that enables you to control lights, play music and perform other tasks with the movement of one finger.
Although the holograms aren't there (yet), this entry into that realm conjures up daydreams of tons of possibilities.
The unit we played with was a prototype, so we were limited to using finger gestures to play music and control a light icon on our smartphone, but the possibilities for this tech is endless.
Essentially the Welle is a small box that can be placed anywhere there's a flat surface. You simply download the Welle app to your Android phone, turn it on and it connects via Bluetooth.
Although the app we used only allowed us to run a demo, future versions will let you map any computer function or smart home device to work with it.
The key to working with the Welle is to keep your finger horizontal to the surface you're working with. Using the music app, we were able to change tunes by simply swiping our finger left or right and control volume by moving it up or down. The light controls allowed us to dim, brighten or change the hue of lights with a few simple gestures.
According to the folks at MaxusTech, the device works using Sonar - - - using ultrasound waves to "capture echoes from the finger and interpret the signal to tracks and recognize discretional gestures."
More information can be found on Welle's kickstarter page.
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