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Friday, October 12, 2007

Weaves remote-control magic

weaves remote-control magicTechnology shows everyday new news, really its magic

Microsoft Xwand weaves remote-control magic

Cinderella's fairy godmother has nothing on Microsoft's Xwand. Point this digital magic wand at a light, and the lights go on. Point it at the stereo and turn it to the right, and the volume goes up. "We're trying to get away from ... the universal remote where you have 300 buttons," says Andy Wilson, the Microsoft researcher who was key in developing the device.
The Xwand, a prototype, contains a set of motion sensors that tell a nearby computer whether it is pointing left or right, up or down.

The computer uses that information to adjust whatever device the Xwand is pointing at.

Microsoft is experimenting with adding voice-recognition features. To turn on the light, you'd point the Xwand at it and say, "On." That would keep the lights from flickering every time you moved the Xwand around.

The Xwand is only a prototype. It will be years before the technology is ready for consumers, but when it is, Wilson says, he sees it being used in homes and offices.

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