Tech Weekly: Hands On
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If the eyes are the window to the soul, the hands must be the car parked out front. Hands are how we get around, and our sense of touch is one fundamental way we experience, learn, and interact with our environment. From a digital handpan to a glove that lets you feel virtual reality, this week's Technology projects will put the whole wide world in your hands.
At this point, virtual reality is old hat. Sure, it's cool to instantly be transported to another world, explore, and interact in real time, but why bother until you can really feel it? The team behind Gloveone hopes to put that power in your hands. Or rather, on your hands. Gloveone features 10 actuators along its palm and fingertips, which vibrate independently at different frequencies and intensities in an effort to reproduce the sense of touch. The hope is that, by granting developers open access to the SDK, soon your forays into the virtual realm will be just a little bit realer.
The handpan is a type of acoustic steelpan played with the hands which has grown in worldwide popularity over the past decade. Played in the same manner, Oval is the first ever digital version of the instrument. Created by a team in Barcelona, the ergonomically designed Oval is light, portable, and super durable. It connects wirelessly to your phone or tablet, and the included app allows you to change and create sounds, and even share your original compositions with the Oval community.
Until now, the best way to filter out things we'd rather not listen to has been to put our fingers in our ears. Thanks to Here, a wireless interactive listening system, that's no longer necessary. Here includes a microphone, a digital signal processor, and a speaker. Just pop in the bluetooth buds, and tweak your settings in the phone app. It has features like a real world volume control, a live music equalizer, and even presets that isolate and tune out specific frequencies. That means you can finally turn down the volume on that screeching subway train, or, you know, your kids.
Drones get a bad rap nowadays, probably because we pigeonhole them as tiny flying camera creepers. But they can be so much more, and Eedu wants to show us how. Eedu is a drone kit with students in mind. Kids (or savvy adults) assemble Eedu, and then download or write their own code for the device in the included software. Sync up, take to the skies, and then repeat the process. It's a wonderful hands-on way to inspire a budding dronesmith, and simultaneously show the world that these airborne buzzies can be our buddies.
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