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Disney Research has developed a capacitive touch screen that is capable of recognizing multiple users
Disney Research has developed a screen that can recognize multiple users. Not in the classic sense of taking turns, either. Two people can touch the display at the same time and the screen can tell who is who. This is an amazing advancement in technology and could be the next big thing in touch screens.
According to Disney, it works by measuring the impedance of a person to various frequencies of AC electricity. To put it much more simply, it measures how your body reacts to AC electricity. Once the measurements are done, it is saved into your profile. You can have a potentially unlimited number of users.
The way the technology is right now, it already has a bunch of potential uses. True multiplayer gaming on things like tablets would be possible. Really, any interactive function that can be done by multiple people could be used. In the video at the bottom, Disney demonstrates a multi-user paint application.
Is Disney going to be putting this on tablets or smartphones?
It is still in development, so there is no real date or time frame when this will be released to everyone. Disney still has a lot of refinement to do before this can be made a commercial product. There are also some things Disney may need to fix.
According to Engadget, various clothing items, shoes, and other things can affect your impedance. So if you create a profile, then put on your shoes, it could force you to create a whole new profile.
Small bumps in the road aside, this is very cool. Even in the state it is now, the ability to play truly multiplayer games would be amazing. Aside from emulators allowing for multiple, user-dependent keyboards, games like Angry Birds could incorporate a versus mode. Piggies versus Birds? You saw it here first.
One more thing worth mentioning is when this technology is closer to perfected, it’ll be able to recognize a user no matter what shoes they’re wearing. ICS brought us face unlocking. Disney may be bringing us fingerprint unlocking.
With Google working on multiple users for Android, it could be possible for each person to have their own Android profile that includes their own touch profile. So if you’re logged in and someone else starts messing with your phone, it’ll do something like automatically lock down. The possibilities are limitless.
Is anyone else excited? Let us know what you think and check out the video below to see it in action!