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Warning: MYO wristband does not give you superpowers

Steve Sande, @stevensande
February 25, 2013
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Another attempt at controlling your Mac and other digital devices by flailing your hands and arms around in awkward gestures is available for pre-order today. The MYO wristband (US$149) from Thalmic Labs won't be shipping until late 2013, and the company's marketing strategy appears to be relying on the childlike wish of being able to wave your hands and arms Harry Potter-like to have objects bow to your command.

The technology is cool enough; MYO is an armband that measures electrical activity in your arm muscles and translates gestures and movements into corresponding actions on your digital device. The video below shows a number of examples of how this can be used -- one quite practical idea demonstrates a wheeled robotic vehicle being controlled with hand and arm gestures.

But it's the marketing hype that's a bit over the top: "unleash your inner Jedi," or the comment from Thalmic Labs CEO Stephen Lake that the company is interested in "giving us superpowers." Thalmic Labs even uses the tried-and-true method of overhyping a product by resorting to a quote from Steve Wozniak.

If you're a developer and this is hitting your main nerve, the MYO API is available today as well. Just don't expect me to get excited about MYO until I'm able to extend my middle finger at the screen to close browser tabs displaying over-the-top marketing statements.

In this article: gesture control, GestureControl, MYO
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