New technology rarely inspires the imagination as much as the idea of motion control does. For one thing, new breakthroughs can be complicated, and they often require explanation. Motion control doesn't need any of that; the concept itself is simple enough to grasp and exciting enough to intrigue. So when Leap Motion started to show off its breakthrough motion controller, they didn't have to work hard to make people want it. It just had to figure out how to get the thing in their hands.
Enter Asus computers. The Taiwanese personal computing company recently revealed that they will be bundling the Leap Motion controller with its high-end notebooks and All-in-One PCs this year.
"Our commitment to innovation and exceptional quality drive us to provide the best technology to our consumers," said Albert Wu, Desktop Division Senior Director at ASUSTek. "Leap Motion has developed an exciting technology that will truly enhance the experience our customers have with their ASUS devices, opening a world of opportunity for personal use and business, from entertainment to architecture to education. We're proud to be one of the first companies to partner with Leap Motion."
The way it works is simple. The controller tracks your movements down to 1/100th of a millimeter, which, as the company likes to say, is smaller than the point on a pen. Users can draw onscreen or play games with extreme precision, as well as zoom in and out of the screen as they would on a typical touch screen. In addition to movement tracking, the controller creates an interactive area of 8 cubic feet that can be manipulated onscreen.
While the prospect of motion control is always stirring - most notably, perhaps, in the film "Minority Report" - it doesn't always translate perfectly into the real world. Nintendo's motion-based Wii game console sold millions of units based on its potential to change gaming, but the industry has seen a gradual shift back to the use of buttons and touch screens.
Even though it's unlikely that the motion controller can replace the mouse anytime soon, it has so far been welcomed with open arms by the media. Popular Mechanics named it one of the top 10 technology breakthroughs of 2012.
Watch Leap Motion's video demonstration here.