Here’s a video showcasing some startling new technology from Fujitsu and Docomo. The I Beam allows users to control a device such as an ereader using eye movements. The system works by tracking the movement of the eye and using this to determine where on the screen the cursor should go.
I Beam works using an infra-red camera mounted on the device, so there’s no need for a bulky headset or special glasses. Judging by the video, it looks to be something that might take a lot of getting used to, and I can’t help wondering whether it might prove less useful than it seems. After all, don’t we usually let our eyes dart around a screen fairly freely? Using eye movements to get things done might disrupt many of our more intuitive reactions to a screen.
The growing popularity of touchscreen devices has demonstrated that consumers are willing to move away from the traditional trackpad or mouse, at least in certain environments. But this I Beam device seems like it might be a step too far, although doubtless there’ll be plenty of early adopters who’ll be only too happy to prove me wrong.