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Armband advances smartglass with hands-free access

26 Aug 2014  | R. Colin Johnson

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Head-mounted displays (HMDs) like Google Glass, Epson's Moverio, and Recon's Jet solidify their real-world applications with their integration with Thalmic Lab's Myo, an armband controller.

"Myo is a more comfortable interface to a HMD than a touchpad," said Scott Greenberg, director of development at Thalmic Labs Inc. "It solves the problem of controlling the display without having to touch or talk."

Thalmic has been working on integrating Myo with Google Glass, Epson Moverio, and Recon Jet for about six months and already has a half dozen real-world applications under its belt. One of the most appropriate has been medical applications, since there are dozens of situations where a doctor need hands-free access to reams of clinical information that cannot be easily recalled with voice interfaces.

 Myo armband

Figure 1: Thalmic Lab's Myo armband can accurately discern dozens of hand gestures making head-mounted displays also hands/voice free. (Source: Thalmic Labs)

"The Myo helps medical personnel because you don't actually have to touch devices to control them; you can just perform a hand gesture to manipulate the display," Greenberg told EE Times. "This is especially important in a surgical setting where you can't touch things because your hands are sterile."

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