Surely You Gesture

Integrated Systems Europe 2012 was held two weeks ago in Amsterdam. One of the more interesting items to come out of it was a demo by Crestron that showed a Microsoft Kinect integrated with a control system – in this case controlling the PowerPoint and lighting. Here is the link. Go watch it. I’ll wait….

Cool huh? Sure it’s pretty basic, but could this be the predecessor of our future control systems? It is Crestron dabbling in this after all; I don’t think that’s insignificant.

One advantage I have heard mentioned is no more gunky touch screens. (Do you really have people who clean them periodically?)

A gesture based system may allow for control from a wider range of locations. I am assuming, like mine, your faculty relate to AV control locations the way cats relate to patio doors: the other side would be better.

Many of us have wondered where touch-sensitive monitors are going. Are they going to take over for interactive whiteboards and give us something easier to integrate into an auditorium? If gesture control develops fast enough could it steal some of that thunder and let us turn any image into an interactive whiteboard? I think that level of annotation and interaction, coupled with the ability to wander around the teaching area, might just be the “killer app.”

Voice control? I don’t know. Siri seems to be having quite a bit of trouble with accents. I’m sure the algorithms will get better, but most of our campuses are quite the eclectic mix of nationalities. I can’t help but think we will be a difficult application to master. Besides, how much error-free consistency do you want to see in a control system before you install it in a room? With voice control the first one they yell at is the system, and you know who the second is….

I think it’s intriguing. I think it’s something we are going to see more of. I think it has some great potential. What do you think? Is this the (ahem) wave of the future.

2 thoughts on “Surely You Gesture”

  1. Greg-

    Right now we are dealing with class capture and the issues with camera tracking. Wouldn’t it be super cool if gesture control allowed a faculty member to indicate where the camera was to be focused? Or chose what preset to go to?

  2. You are so right Scott. I think lecture capture is definitely one of those “killer app” areas for the technology. People don’t realize how often an instructor will be talking about something they aren’t standing directly in front of. It has forced us to stick with cameras on tripods, or operator controlled PTZ cameras for all lecture capture.

    We even had a homemade system that automatically switched to follow the instructor as they walked in front of the various boards, went to a wide shot when they left the boards, and switched to the screen if they changed what was being projected. It was very cool, but it got nixed because of how often the instructor would walk off and point to something or talk about something that wasn’t where the camera just followed them to.

    (If that system sounds interesting to anyone out there in AV-1-land let me know and maybe I’ll do a write up on it.)

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