SpaceTop 3D makes see-through computing a reality

We've heard of transparent smartphones but what about see-through desktops? The SpaceTop 3D system, developed in collaboration with Microsoft, promises to let you "feel" your computer by using your hands to reach inside and interact with it.

The computer was demoed at a TED talk by Jinha Lee, the MIT computer scientist, who has been working on the system with Microsoft. The theory behind it is rather brilliant, in that it aims to bring increased interaction with a computer so we can manipulate objects as we would solid 3D ones.

It could mean a huge step forward for designers, programmers and even the average consumer. Take the design process of a car, for example: that 3D model could now become interactive with hands being used to sculpt and shape it.

It works by using a system of an LED display and multiple cameras that can track your hand and eye movements. The display is tilted, so you can place your hands underneath it, while objects appear to be floating on the surface below.

The computer also includes a touchpad for more precise gestures and actions. There are plans for it to be on sale within the next decade.

Only yesterday we saw the MYO, a wearable motion sensor which allows you to implement gesture control on Mac and PCs. What next? 



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