Microsoft Surface multi-touch interface table unveiled
Microsoft has unveiled Surface, a high-tech, touch-sensitive, table that allows users to interact with computers without keyboards and mice.
30 May, 2007
On May 30, Microsoft unveiled a
high-tech table called Microsoft
Surface. In the past few years, there
has been sporadic interest in surface
and gestural interface computing
systems and some prototypes did
surface. There have also been wow
demonstrations that never took off,
for lack of the kind of resources
needed to push the technology.
Microsoft Surface, started as Project Milan, some five years ago. Starting with a small team, that grew to nearly 100, the project has been very hush-hush.
The Surface runs on a Vista PC, DLP
projectors, and cameras placed in its
underbelly. Does not sound very
different from touchscreens in ATMs
and stores? Actually, it may be, if
Surface does manage to deliver all
that it promises, at affordable
prices. If we go by Microsoft's
claims, the uses of the Surface are
pretty interesting. Firstly, the
Surface allows 52 touches at one time,
which means large groups can
manipulate the Surface at the same
time. So, if you want to fiddle with
pictures in a group, you can transfer
pictures from your digital camera by
just placing the camera on the
Surface. You can then rotate, crop or
resize the pictures.
Then, there will be community games, that many people will be able to play at one shot.
Another interesting feature. The
Surface will completely steer clear of
the usual Windows interface. So, there
will be no Start menu, none of the
files, folders, and icons that you
would normally see on a desktop.
Then, Microsoft plans to roll out the
Surface in November 2007, only in
hotels, restaurants, stores, and
casinos starting with launch partners
T-Mobile stores, Starwood hotels, and
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