Mar.15, 2013

Your Kinect can read your mind!

Eye tracking is one of the most fascinating technologies. You can select items just by looking at them, you can control games and even your browser will automatically scroll adjusted to your reading.

Eye tracking usually requires expensive IR technology, but with a little twist and the NUIA eyeCharm your Kinect can be upgraded to an eye tracker.

The NUIA eyeCharm developed by Munich based 4tiitoo, is a hardware add-on for Microsoft's Kinect. It is a plug and play device that you can attach to any Kinect (Xbox 360 or Windows) and adds eye-tracking controls in under 10 minutes. Essentially it sends out a beam of infrared light at a user's face, where the infrared cameras will then capture the user's eye movements. The movements are then translated into instructions that a machine can understand.

With eye-tracking system you can interact with your computer in a fun way: you can scroll webpages by looking at them, play Diablo with both hands on the keyboard for chatting, or flip through photo galleries with gaze and natural gestures.

The NUIA eyeCharm currently support Windows 7/8 and you will need a Kinect (Xbox or Windows version) including its USB adapter cable. An included SDK will let developers create extensions for apps and will supports input from other eye trackers (e.g. tobii and SMI).

4tiitoo has launched a Kickstarter campaign to make your computer work easier and a lot cooler. The company is offering the eyeCharm in a few ways: a special offer for makers - pledging $42 you get the electric parts and the construction plan, so that you can print the eyeCharm in your style on your 3D printer, plus a shipment with all the components you can not print yourself (PCB, optics, electrical components and connectors). Another option is, for $60 ($50 for early birds) you can get the complete NUIA eyeCharm.

As of this writing, the eyeCharm project has been funded $34,502 by 437 backers, reached 34% of its $100,000 goal. The project has still 23 days to go.

Here is the production plan according to the Kickstarter page:

  • Pre-Production run and QA testing: June 3, 2013
  • Initial Production run with 100 devices: June 17, 2013
  • Start of Production run of all devices: June 27, 2013
  • Beta Release NUIA Core & SDK with closed beta testing: July 5, 2013
  • Finale Release NUIA Core & SDK and shipping to customer: August 1, 2013

To see it in action, check the video after the break.






Posted in 3D Printing Applications

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