Wi-Fi and Gesture Recognition Make You Your Own Universal Remote

You’ll never have to walk back from the front door to your bedroom to turn off the light before leaving again – just put your hand up and make the right motion to flip a switch. What about when you are in the kitchen cooking and a song comes up that you don’t like? Don’t wash the raw meat off your hands – just put one of those hands in the air and flip to the next track as if you were at a jukebox.

This is what the world is coming to as computer scientists explore more options in the gesture recognition scope. Gesture recognition isn’t just to make you look silly playing video games anymore – and forget about having to stand in front of a device. Wi-Fi will make it possible to be your own human remote control device from anywhere in your home.

Wireless signals are typically used to let all your devices connect to the Internet or one another – the idea here is to repurpose those wireless signals to pick up specific gestures you make anywhere in the vicinity. All you need is a Wi-Fi router that has been adapted, along with some wireless devices to control. Oh yeah, and your hand!

How does Wi-Fi accomplish this? Unlike present gesture recognition devices, Wi-Fi doesn’t rely on line of sight. Since wireless signal can transmit through walls you can make your gestures from anywhere. Since our bodies have their own frequency we actually affect wireless signals in a very slight way as it is – researchers have just come up with a way to detect these minor shifts.

Presently researchers have the system detecting 9 unique gestures – a study was conducted in which five individuals performed 900 different gestures, and the system was correct 94% of the time.

This makes it the first system of this magnitude that doesn’t require the setting up of cameras or sensors in each room – it just needs an extra antenna for each new person that the system is required to recognize. This ensures that a spastic guest can’t flail around and turn your house into a discotheque! It also keeps the system from getting hacked – you have to perform a specific sequence of gestures as a password.

You may finally be about to get your wish and be able to turn on the coffee maker before you even get out of bed!