As of today, the design for the multitouch table is completed. It’s a 49” by 28” table standing 36” tall. We’ve chosen to make it of wood that’s going to be painted (what color, we don’t know yet. The screen is 52” piece of tempered glass. We’re gonna put in a sub-woofer and 5 speakers that go along with it for pretty decent quality sound, and it’s going to operate on Windows 8 if possible.
Software designs are going to be underway soon. This is likely to be the longest leg of the design as well, because we have to find a way to alter the compatibility of certain programs to that of Windows 8.
Also, for those who read Kareem’s post and were confused about “blobs and fiducials”, this is a basic version of how the table is going to operate (time for some amazing drawings from MS Paint!)
The inside of the table is lined with infrared lights. When on, these lights will flood the bottom of the table up until the blue line that I drew, which is a diffusive material. This material will let absorb the infrared light and reflect a minuscule portion of it, but it won’t let light escape beyond it. When a hand is present on the glass screen on top…
The glass will cause the diffusive material to bend a tiny bit (the glass and material are actually really close together, I just can’t draw) and the light hitting that portion of the material will be reflect, causing a “blob” of infrared light. Our camera will read this as a “touch”, and the computer (which will likely have a terabyte hard drive!) will recognize this as a mouse click. The projector simply plays the role of a monitor and projects the current “screen” of the computer onto the glass. The cycle then repeats itself many times per second to track movement.
As for fiducials, you can think of these as fingerprints. They’re ink blots on plastic that the computer has been programmed to recognize and behave a certain way towards. For example:
These two fiducials are different, and will execute different programs. While the one on the left may play a certain song when laid on the screen, the one on the right may change the background of the screen. Each one is different, like a fingerprint.
Anyways, I think I covered everything. Until the next update!