Microsoft Touchless:Fresh from Office Labs

Microsoft lab rats have been in the dungeon cooking up some new software and technology and the results are very cool. I think the innovative side of Microsoft is starting to come out, about time, since Apple and Google have been been in the forefront of creativity lately.

What is Microsoft Touchless?

A multitouch software from Microsoft Office Labs that uses a regular Web camera and everyday objects as input. Touchless enables touch without touching by using a webcam to track color based markers. Like Microsoft Surface and Touchwall, the Touchless software makes it possible to create applications that turn hand gestures and physical objects into an input device like a mouse.Touchless includes two parts:

Touchless Demo is an open source application that anyone with a webcam can use to experience multi-touch, no geekiness required. There are 4 fun demos: Snake - where you control a snake with a marker, Defender - up to 4 player version of a pong-like game, Map - where you can rotate, zoom, and move a map using 2 markers, and Draw - the marker is used to guess what.... draw!

Touchless SDK is an open source SDK that enables developers to create multi-touch based applications using a webcam for input, geekiness recommended.

This project is an Office Labs community project, which means a Microsoft employee worked on this in their spare time. It is also an open source project, which means that anyone can view, use, and contribute to the code.