Personal Screens Made From Mist: Innovative Technology Made Out Of Thin Air [VIDEO]

By Shweta Iyer on April 11, 2014 3:05 PM EDT

mist screen
Soon you may be able to show your presentation slides by simply moving your finger through thin air, literally. (Photo: Photo courtesy of Shutterstock)

Soon you may be able to show your presentation slides by simply moving your finger through thin air, literally. A research paper, on a new table top display with personal screens made from a table of mist that allows users to move images around and load them onto the display, will be presented at the ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing System 2014, one of the world's foremost conferences on Human-Computer Interaction, according to a press release Thursday.

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Professor Sriram Subramanian and Dr Diego Martinez Plasencia from the University of Bristol's Department of Computer Science have developed this new technology called MisTable. It is a tabletop system that combines a conventional interactive table with personal screens, built using fog, between the user and the tabletop surface. This new technology is certainly path breaking and can change the way people interact in the future.

The MisTable is both see-through and reach-through. With the see-through feature, the user can see the personal screen and the elements behind it on the tabletop. With the reach through feature, the user can interact with the personal screen or reach through it and interact with the tabletop or the space above it.

The personal screen offers a host of features such as sharing content with another user or on the tabletop, 3D interaction, or supplementing and renewing actual objects differently for each user.Sriram Subramanian, Professor of Human-Computer Interaction, in the University's Bristol Interaction and Graphics group, said, "MisTable broadens the potential of conventional tables in many novel and unique ways.

The personal screen provides direct line of sight and access to the different interaction spaces. Users can be aware of each other's actions and can easily switch between interacting with the personal screen to the tabletop surface or the interaction section. This allows users to break in or out of shared tasks and switch between "individual" and "group" work.

"Users can also move content freely between these interaction spaces. Moving content between the tabletop and the personal screen allow users to share it with others or to get exclusive ownership over it. The research team believe MisTable could support new forms of interaction and collaboration in the future. "With MisTable, each user can have their own personal screen and can also customize it to one's needs and at the same time use conventional tabletop interface techniques like touch and tangible interactions.

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