Gesture control is still a work in progress. Just ask anybody who spent a little too much time messing around with the Kinect. But it’s still a good idea, it just needs some tweaking… and the Fin might just be the tweak it needs.
The Fin is a fairly straightforward concept, on paper. Just slide on the ring, on the finger of your choice, connect it via Bluetoothand start making gestures. In some ways, the technology is fairly familiar in that we’ve seen plenty of motion-tracking devices before. But this isn’t just a Wiimote with delusions of grandeur; the developers of Fin have actually thought through how people might actually use this in the real world.
Giving Technical Problems The Finger
Essentially, instead of waving your arm around, the Fin has you use your fingers in a fairly intuitive way.
For example, if you adjust the Fin to start giving orders to your TV, adjusting volume is as simple as dragging your thumb up and down on your finger. If it’s controlling your smartphone, and you want to skip a song, just slide your thumb across your palm. It’s a surprisingly intuitive idea, and so basic you find yourself wondering why more elaborate systems haven’t tried this already.
Of course, there are still some roadblocks between the idea and actually using your thumbs to give bad motion controls the finger. To start with, the Fin needs to wrap up its IndieGoGo campaign, although it’s already nearly doubled its goal. The good news, though, is that you can still get in on the ground floor; the fundraising campaign has six days to go, and currently you can reserve your version for $105, compared to $120.
Now, of course, this just needs to catch on enough that motion controls can actually be seen as useful. But one step at a time.
Dan Seitz is an obsessive nerd living in New England. He lives in the Boston area with a fiancee, a dog, a cat, and far too many objects with processors.