[#OPINION] Motion Controller for everything (ohh, yeahhhh! developer view)



It’s been over 2 years since the Kinect sensor was released. Even though it was not the first sensor which allows you to control games with body movements, it was one of the first to do it without any device attached to your body and with a pretty good accuracy. If we do a bit of history review we’ll find another examples like the Play Station 2 camera or the Wiimote included in the Nintendo Wii. These samples are quite different between them, the Play Station was a new but poor stuff, and the Wiimote was a step forward, a very good device with a good idea.

Then get Kinect, later comes Leap Motion and now Apple buys PrimeSense (the ones who created the Kinect technology). The last one is great for specialists who can predict the future, they started to begin to talk about a revolution in applications motion controlled.

Probably the most famous Apple device is the iPhone; that’s why everyone expects that the new IOS / iPhone will incorporate something related to Motion Controller. If we see the panorama with a wider mind (not closed pleaseas the fanboys) we can find older examples of apps controlled movements with the camera on mobile phones; in example in some Samsung devices and even some years ago in a few mobile phones from Sony to control the music player.

And here comes the problem, it seems that everything now has to be motion controller capable (or ability to be controlled with movements). And as the saying goes, When you have a hammer in hand, everything looks like a nail .


At this point, first thing we must do is to actually ask if adding motion control capabilities is necessary. Maturing stage many times we come to a point so

It is possible that an application is motion controller capable, but is it really necessary?

Consider how useful that would be able to control full Excel with a Kinect, or Adobe Creative Suite with Leap Motion apps. We are sure that there are possibilities to improve the work, but that it is possible does not mean that we should do so. Making a simple exercise of ROI we will see if the investment is worth

Clarification: Caution! We have to be very careful and not be fooled by the nice thing of the motion controller mainstream

After trying several of these technologies over the past years, the truth is Motion Controller options can be defined in several types, for example gestures, pointers or natural movements. In each of these cases, it is very simple to start thinking about how to apply these actions to control any type of application.

However, when we started working with motion controller, the first dilemma kicking us in the face is to work in a 3D world. Most of the apps that we know are designed to be controlled in 2D. Most of the programmers who create this kind of application, “thinks in 2D”. From my experience the change is not trivial.

The first thing we should do as developers would begin to adapt our applications so that they work under this new concept. In this way we will know their capabilities and really see if they are useful and applicable in other contexts.

As well said Abe Lincoln: “If they give you 6 hours to knock down a tree with an axe, invest 4 hours in sharpening your axe“. Learn and use these technologies and then think about them. In the coming years will appear increasingly more devices with sensors of movement, location sensors, routines for the detection of gestures, feelings, etc. Now a simple bracelet gives us lots of information and our challenge is to join all these possibilities so that the user experience is the best possible.

Greetings @ Córdoba

El Bruno


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