Welcome back to my armchair coverage of CES 2012. I’ve been highlighting what I think are the cool gizmos and what have you from the show by scouring much of the interwebs in the hopes that you don't have to. Today we have an eye opening control scheme, tiny hotspot tech, some Verizon Android news and a new console. I threw that last one in there since I'm sure you're still weeping from no Xbox or Playstation announcement. Wipe those tears away. You're welcome, citizen.
The eyes have it: the Tobii Gaze UI
Ever want to control a computer with your eyes? A company called Tobii Technology may have you covered. Their Gaze UI abandons the mouse and uses them two eyeballs in your head to make things go. Once it takes a few minutes to map your peepers to its sensors, you can use its gesture-based interface that tracks your eyes as an on-screen cursor, and it’s designed to handle all of the touch commands of Windows 8. They still have a touchpad as part of the system to supplement the optical controls, used for tapping instead of dragging your finger around for navigation. Or you know, in case you’re all jittery. The unit is still a prototype, and Engadget has a nice hands-on video if you want to take a look, complete with a couple of snags (cut them some slack, it's a prototype). It shows a user using the eyeball tracking with the touchpad for the occasional tapping (sans dragging) and runs with Metro stylings of Windows 8. I'm curious if it's the touch-friendly Windows 8 interface that allows this to work as well as it does (so far). If that's the case then this could be applicable to other touch-optimized OS's on tablets like Android devices and iPads. Well probably not on iPads, unless Apple decides to buy Tobii and keep it all in-house of course. The video is pretty impressive considering this being Tobii’s first public outing with this technology. Plus it’s not a final release of Windows 8 it’s running on either. So while it’s still rough, once it gets a little bit more work and development we could have something pretty phenomenal that can run on tablets while you're on the go, but hopefully not on a shaky bus.