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Intel's Mooly Eden: 'Voice will do to touch what touch did to keyboards'


We've spent a big chunk of this morning talking to Intel's Mooly Eden, who showed us through the company's new perceptual computing platform. He's an effusive and passionate speaker who describes himself as one of the company's dreamers and thinks that a user interface revolution is shortly upon us. We've already spent some time interacting with the company's new depth-camera and eye-tracking technology, but now we wanted to dig deep to understand the thinking behind the system and what technical and practical limitations that need to be addressed before we can get to the computing future of Star Trek.

Of course, people successfully talking to computers has been a highlight of science fiction for decades. The difference now, according to Eden, is that there is now enough computing power to make it a reality. He's also said that touch isn't the future of computing, explaining that:

"Why do people use touch instead of keyboards? Many people say it's because it's intuitive. What I'm saying, is that voice will do to touch what touch did to keyboards. Touch is not intuitive, because in fifty million years of human evolution, we do not touch each other and in the US, it's politically incorrect. We don't touch each other, we can touch, but it's not natural."

It's his prediction that, as soon as he can develop an architecture that can eliminate the latency of cloud-based services like Siri, that touch will soon fall away from its rarified position. Given that he's claiming it'll only take a few years, we'll be able to hold him to his claim.

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