Disney Creates Touch Sensing Technology That Works On Any Surface
Disney Research have released a paper detailing their rather intuitive new touch-sensing technology, which they're calling Touché.
At this point in time, some of the most sophisticated touch-based technology we have is the capacitive screen, which operates on one frequency: on or off. With Touché however, this is to work on a wider range of frequencies at the same time, meaning that interface can move far beyond multitouch gestures on screens into differentiating which parts of the body are making contact, and adding touch to surfaces out of the ordinary, such as liquids.
Disney has not announced any plans with the technology beyond its concept of taking the computer out of computing, and making it "invisible." A few concepts are shown and pondered, such as controlling your music player by touching gesturing on different areas of your hands and wrists, notifying outside entrants into a room of whether you don't want to be disturbed by touching the door know, or teaching a child with eating utensil to use with which food.
It may take a while for something like this to implement, as it requires a whole new set of UI skills and practice from the user; but just like capacitive touch, it's only a matter of time. The full science is explained in this PDF.
Source: Disney Research