French physicists Ros Kiri Ing and Mathias Fink have figured out how to turn any rigid surface into an interface for electronic systems. The technology – which the pair hope to commercialize via their Paris-based startup, Sensitive Object – uses one or two inexpensive accelerometers to detect finger taps on, say, a storefront display window or a keyboard drawn on a blackboard. A computer chip calculates the precise origin of each tap and translates that information into mouse clicks and keystrokes. Users might use the technology, for example, to “click” on a storefront mannequin’s hat to learn its price. Ing says the technique has advantages over other user interfaces under development because it can work with a surface as large as four square meters, and the number of “keys” can reach 544.
A Roomba recorded a woman on the toilet. How did screenshots end up on Facebook?
Robot vacuum companies say your images are safe, but a sprawling global supply chain for data from our devices creates risk.
A startup says it’s begun releasing particles into the atmosphere, in an effort to tweak the climate
Make Sunsets is already attempting to earn revenue for geoengineering, a move likely to provoke widespread criticism.
10 Breakthrough Technologies 2023
These exclusive satellite images show that Saudi Arabia’s sci-fi megacity is well underway
Weirdly, any recent work on The Line doesn’t show up on Google Maps. But we got the images anyway.
Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review
Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.