entrepreneurship / Products / startups / Tech

MYO Gesture Control Armband: Is the Time of the Keyboard Ending?


MYO gesture control armband (courtesy of cultofmac)

MYO gesture control armband (courtesy of cultofmac)

MYO, by Canadian Thalmic Labs, is a gesture control armband that is currently on preorder, is planned to sell for $149 usd off their site.  The website has a video of the product and holds a caption that points to a potential that will have us all gesturing our commands.  I suppose Italians will be the best users of this devices! The company’s founders are part of the winter 2013 YCombinator team and seem to have gotten Paul Grahm’s tweetin’ support (see below).  Their site leaves the options broad and exciting for potential developers, with a couple sentences mentioning what one will be able to control and the interaction being of the digital world:

With the wave of your hand, MYO will transform how you interact with your digital world.

The MYO armband lets you use the electrical activity in your muscles to wirelessly control your computer, phone, and other favorite digital technologies.

So, what does that mean?  How will this transform the way we interact with the digital world? 

I have been amazed at how fast the quantitative self data world has become popular amongst people around the country, but now even more amazed at how the world of gestures as it went from kinect to Leap Motion, has now gone to the Thalmic labs armband control via your muscle movements.

How will this new experience option change digital media?  When Timothy Binkley wrote about “The Computer is Not a Medium” and that it is us the users that use it to guide it and create the medium for work, in some ways he was preparing for a time even before his knowledge when we would use smartphones like a computer, and have ipads and the likes that allowed us to create “computer art” and digital media in ways that were more out of past sci-fi movies than reality.

Will this be an age when we will be able to just use gestures to guide us when we are driving? Will our cars in the future come with computers that work on gestures, hence, fully taking away the need of even owning a keyboard?

I’m sure that the potential of voice activated guiding mechanisms will be further enhanced soon, but for now, I will see how my muscles (at least on my arm) can guide the forces in front of me (on my laptop screen).  May the MYO band create true disruption in our digital world.  Who knows, maybe I will be able to just use gestures to drag and drop parts of this article into boxes for my future blog posts.

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