Enter the maze

Ringing the changes

by Peter W McOwan, Queen Mary University of London

fireball ring Image from pixabay.com REF 1149724

Like a mystic Dr Strange-like superhero, whose simple hand gestures make the world around them spring to life, the Zero Ring, makes things happen. It may sound like it's part of an infinity gauntlet, but it actually contains motion sensors that track how your hand moves around. Linked by Bluetooth to your mobile phone, this gesture signal is compared with template gestures saved in the phone. If they match the phone sends a message to make something useful happen. One gesture might cause your smart-enabled light bulb to turn on. Another might turn the central heating up a notch. Critically, the ring has an on-off switch to prevent it working when you don't want it to! After all you don't want all your hand movements to be tracked and so control things all the time.

This wearable tech is one of the first consumer goods to be operated by recognising simple gestures as orders. As the technology progresses, more complex hand patterns will be possible opening up whole new ways to interact.

Just don't have it switched on when you are having a scratch ... or your personal universe might just collapse by mistake.

This article funded by ...

Institute of Coding Logo