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Cheap sensors could enable next-gen mo-cap games

Cheap sensors could enable next-gen mo-cap games
Nilay Patel
Nilay Patel|November 27, 2007 10:05 AM
Now that the Wii's thoroughly indoctrinated everyone and their mothers (and grandmothers) into the joy of motion-sensitive gaming, it's only natural to ask what's next -- and a system of cheap accelerometers, gyroscopes, and ultrasonic sound emitters developed by a team at in Switzerland could provide some answers. The sensors are linked up and used like a rudimentary motion-capture suit -- only instead of needing a controlled environment and special cameras, microphones worn on the torso pick up beeps from the emitters to locate your limbs as you flail about. The system is flexible enough to be used during active sports like skiing or bicycling for more accurate motion capture or just to control video games, since no silly ping-pong ball suit is required. The team says the $3000 system is built from off the shelf parts, yet compares favorably to commercial mo-cap systems costing tens of thousands more -- and what's more, they expect the price to fall to "hundreds of dollars" soon. Excellent -- we were thinking it was about time to do some real damage in Wii Boxing. Check a vid of the system in action after the break.
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