Google patent shows Project Glass with a laser-projected keyboard

January 17, 2013
5

One of the big questions, or probably more accurately, one of the many unanswered questions surrounding Google's Project Glass deals with input. We have seen some bits showing how the glasses will be able to capture images and video, however what happens when you want to send one of those newly captured images. Or, how about when you want to get some information such as directions.

Simply put, you are going to need to be able to input information at some time, whether it be an email address, street address of just a general search term. We have seen some details about input in the past. Back in July of 2012 our sister site SlashGear talked about some options for controls -- such as the side-mounted 3x3 grid of buttons which could be done physically or virtually. But taking a step back up to present day, it looks like a newly discovered filing with the US Patent & Trademark Office is talking about a virtual projector.

Google-Project-Glass-virtual-keyboard

Keeping in mind, this is a patent filing and something that we may never see come to reality. That being said though, the filing is titled "Methods and Systems for a Virtual Input Device" and details a virtual input device that includes both a projector and a camera. The projector could be mounted on one arm with the camera on the opposite arm. Assuming this is the case, the projector would project a pattern onto a surface and the camera would then capture what is being done.

Google-Project-Glass-laser-projected-keypad

Some of this filing also goes into talking about how the virtual input device could be projected onto the hand of a user. And from here, the camera would be able to detect when the user is selecting items using the other hand. Or alternatively, the camera would be able to detect movements of that same hand. Either way here, this is sort of making it sound like those using these glasses may not only standout for wearing the glasses, but for waving their hand around in strange ways while staring at it. Or looking as if they are pretending to type on their hand or arm.

Bottom line here, this is an interesting patent filing, however we still have plenty to learn about Project Glass. Of course, we are hoping to start getting some answers during the recently announced and still upcoming Project Glass developer hackathon.

[via unwired view]


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  • firethorn

    Hm, while some sort of input device will be needed for wearables, so far I haven’t been impressed by laser-projected keyboards at all. Maybe they could combine it with some sort of gesture recognition à la Kinect.