Human Skin as a Touch-Screen Interface

Skinput Concept

Skinput Concept

The mobile industry started their journey with bulky handsets and huge keypads. With emerging technologies they were able to reduce the size and bring in more features. All this has been replaced by touch-screens and smart phones, with better user interface, and great features. As a next step to this evolution, here come smart phones with human skin as the display screen.

Two major companies called Skinput and Dattoo, have caught the attention of researchers and mobile developers regarding this project. Skinput is a project developed by Microsoft Research and Carnegie Mellon University. You can get all the features of a touch-screen on your skin (arms, legs), using this technology. All you have to do is wear a small armband, which will project the data from a mobile on to a skin, similar to an I-phone or any other touch-screen. As soon as you type a command on your arm, the armband studies the command using an acoustic sensor and executes the command accordingly. The acoustic sensor is used to calculate the exact tissue density and other biometric data’s, to determine the type of command you have given.

The Dattoo is another project designed by a company called Frog Design. This concept is a little more complicated as, instead of projecting an image, the user would have to print an actual customizable electronics setup on his/her arm. The customization would also include all mobile accessories like loudspeaker, mice, and camera. Other than the custom design, the device would also require the user’s DNA, connecting each person to his/her device in the most intimate way possible.

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