We’re one step closer to the Tony Stark workflow depicted in Hollywood films such as Minority Report and Iron Man thanks to a new technology developed at Fujitsu Laboratories which uses a projector and cameras to turn any surface into a touchscreen user interface.

Taichi Murase from Fujitsu Laboratories explained that the technology isn’t using any ground breaking hardware:

"We think paper and many other objects could be manipulated by touching them, as with a touchscreen. This system doesn't use any special hardware; it consists of just a device like an ordinary webcam, plus a commercial projector. Its capabilities are achieved by image processing technology."

He went on to say that the company hopes to develop a commercial version for release in 2014.

"We aim to develop a commercial version of this system by fiscal 2014. It's still at the demonstration level, so it's not been used in actual settings. Next, we'd like to get people to use it for actual tasks, see what issues arise, and evaluate usability. We want to reflect such feedback in this system."

The technology has many great features, such as adjusting lighting and colour temperature based on the ambient light in and around the device. In the demonstration video below we can also see the device doesn’t just require touch, gestures can also be used to manipulate images, documents and other operations of the device.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I for one will be looking forward to further developments and news about the finished product.