San Francisco based startup Leap Motion has unveiled what they simple call the Leap: a component the size of a thumb drive that will enable you to control your computer with gestures. Think Tom Cruise in Minority Report and you'll get the general idea.
This moves such technology beyond the innovative-yet-rather-cumbersome Displair, created in a dorm room in Russia, and into a much wider public space. Where the Displair worked on reading thermal signatures for interaction (a damn clever system; but let's face it, it's not going to be the popular option), Leap is simply a sensor you place at the base of your computer to directly interact, with your movements recreated on screen.
A rather impressive statistic is the accuracy, which Leap Motion are all too pleased to promote on their website: 1/100th of a millimetre. To put that into perspective, that's 200 times more accurate than a Kinect sensor bar, in something that is much smaller.
But they haven't stopped there, refusing to rest on their hardware-based laurels, the software powering the Leap is available to third-party developers for use and abuse à la Kinect hacks. If the community get comparably enthused about this technology like they did with the ability to hack into Microsoft's motion controler, we could begin to see a bunch of sweet Leap hacks.
Developers can apply for a kit on the Leap website, while for the rest of us, pre-order stock is in limited numbers for the price of $70 (about £45). Their website makes the rather brash claim: "It sounds too good to be true, we know. But, that’s what we specialize in around here." If all is as it seems from what we've seen, they may just have a point with this cockily-written piece of copy.
Source: Leap Motion