Interface with computers using gestures of the human body, typically hand movements. In gesture recognition technology, a camera reads the movements of the human body and communicates the data to a computer that uses the gestures as input to control devices or applications. For example, a person clapping his hands together in front of a camera can produce the sound of cymbals being crashed together when the gesture is fed through a computer.
One way gesture recognition is being used is to help the physically impaired to interact with computers, such as interpreting sign language. The technology also has the potential to change the way users interact with computers by eliminating input devices such as joysticks, mice and keyboards and allowing the unencumbered body to give signals to the computer through gestures such as finger pointing.
Unlike haptic interfaces, gesture recognition does not require the user to wear any special equipment or attach any devices to the body. The gestures of the body are read by a camera instead of sensors attached to a device such as a data glove.
In addition to hand and body movement, gesture recognition technology also can be used to read facial and speech expressions (i.e., lip reading), and eye movements.