It is like a Kinect with vitamins with which we can not only play our favourite first-person shooter by pointing our arm and shooting with our hand imitating a gun, but it is even possible to write in the air to detect every nuance of our calligraphy.
His proposal is no more and no less than replacing the keyboard and mouse (or trackpad) by making them obsolete at the stroke of a pen. Surfing a website, drawing, moving around maps or photos in the purest style Minority Report or enjoying all kinds of video games. Leap Motion, the San Francisco startup behind the invention, claims to be 200 times more accurate than any other system available in the market (e.g., I think they say so for Microsoft) and the best thing is that its price is only 70 dollars .
Where’s the trap then? Your settings? Apparently it is also very simple to use: just connect it via USB and that’s it, no calibration or configuration required. Compatibility? It supports Mac OS X and Windows 78 and they will soon make available the necessary libraries for developers to integrate it into their applications so no, there doesn’t seem to be a problem here either.
The fact that it will not be released until early 2013, even though it can already be ordered in advance, does not give us a good feeling, but it seems that the people at Cnet have been able to see it in operation with their own eyes and it seems to be exactly what it claims to be. So, for the last time, where’s the catch? I’ve told you, in what it says it is.
Using the words of Steve Jobs during the 2010 MacBook Air launch, “We’ve done tons of user testing with this [a Mac touch] and it turns out it doesn’t work. Touch surfaces don’t want to be vertical. They look great during a demonstration, but after a short period of time you start to feel fatigued and after a while your arm wants you to put it down. This argument is equally valid for this type of gestural interface: they look great in videos, but when you’re surfing the Internet in real life, the last thing you want is to have your arm raised for two hours.
LEAP is a great idea for me, and I’d love to see it integrated somehow into future Macs to run simple and very specific tasks but no, it’s not going to replace the keyboard, mouse or trackpads because it’s a terrible idea when applied to long periods of time. It’s what we interaction designers call the gorilla arm effect in reference to the feeling it produces after a while by making your arms look huge and heavy. In short, replacing? never, is not a question of technology but anatomical ; now, accompanying? welcome!