project tango

Google is making news today with their Project Tango 3D environment mapping devices. Earlier today we got to see the camera ladden phone take a quadrotor drone for a little test flight, and now we hear rumor of an upcoming 7-inch tablet version that could be in the hands of developers in just a few short weeks.

Autonomous flying robots

The Project Tango smartphone was attached to a modified Ar.Drone 2.0 then flown about the shop area of the University of Pennsylvania researchers that put it all together. The Tango controlled drone was able to accurately hold a fixed position in the room, then was given new coordinates which it safely navigated to, all the while being intentionally taken off course so that it had to make self adjustments. Fairly impressive, if you are into that sort of autonomous flying robots that can take over the world kind of thing. Enough of that talk, let’s see the video.

7-inch tablet

We already knew that Project Tango could accurately render its environment and digitally interact with it in a virtual reality sort of way, what we didn’t know is that Project Tango apparently began its life as a 7-inch tablet prototype. Folks that have been briefed on Google’s plans told the Wall Street Journal that about 4,000 advanced vision capable 7-inch tablets are in development. Hopefully they will be a little better equipped than the described original prototype “mainboard between two slices of acrylic” units.

nasa-tango

Project Tango, like the folks at NASA, hopes to go to space

Just like the smartphone version of Project Tango, the tablets are expected to be passed out to developers that have pitched their intentions to Google. With the ability to precisely capture three-dimensional images of objects using its two back cameras, infrared depth sensors and fancy software, we have every expectation that the recipient developers can help steer the future of this sort of device. We hope that means some great games, too.

No deliver dates have been provided, but the Wall Street Journal suggests the 7-inch tablets could be produced, maybe even released ahead of Google I/O next month.

From flying drones to virtual reality games, what is the best use of Project Tango that you have heard of, or dreamt up?

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