Modern video games have brought us a lot of body movement-based action, but squeezing the controller is energy wasted. Until now.
The Suma sensor from Cambridge Consultants is a new squeezable interface that Cambridge imagines being built into video game controllers of the future. The squeezable 'skin' allows the gamer to register three-dimensional fine motor movements that don't currently amount to didley. And who doesn't like to squeeze a little soft, supple skin?
The press release explains a little better than I: "The patent-pending Suma sensor system translates the three dimensional
deformation of a squeezed object into a software-readable form.
Enabling highly sensitive control by finger movements and whole-hand
grip in this way means that Suma-based devices can capture far more of
the degrees of freedom of the hand than conventional controller
technologies, without the need for cumbersome gloves or sensors."
With this type of interface, future video games could provide new types of body-motion control, like the ability to pick things up and hold them based upon squeezing motions. According to Cambridge, since the technology is ready to integrate into existing controllers, it would only cost about a dollar per unit to do so, meaning that it could be a rare example of high tech/low cost. It seems to be designed with 3D television in mind, creating a way of delivering more three-dimensional motion.
The Suma system will be on display at CES in January.
Cambridge sums up in succinct, slightly disturbing fashion: "...unleash the full capabilities of both the human hand and the user's imagination." Hmmm...we never needed a video game controller for that.