Yesterday I related the story of my newly iPad-savvy Mom trying to swipe at our computer monitor, expecting it to behave like her iPad. On a related note (bear with me), usability expert Jakob Neilsen recently dissected his own, new Christmas gift, Microsoft’s Xbox 360 Kinect, and its gesture-based UI.
It seems like a fairly safe assumption that multi-touch is going to take over the world in the next years, as everyone from toddlers to senior citizens begins to expect displays to respond to their touch, pushing the mouse and keyboard slowly into the dustbin of tech history. But, I wondered, are we already seeing the next phase? If we can already play video games with nothing but gestures in the air, how long will it be until your Website’s visitors expect to be able to navigate with nothing but a swipe of their hand? No keyboard, no mouse, not even a multi-touch surface.
Can you picture the day when you can do serious computing – word processing, manipulating spreadsheets, programming – without a physical interface? How long until you’re steering your car by simply pointing at where you want to go?
OK, I’m off to watch Minority Report again now…