Computer Input At The Tip Of Your Finger

Computer scientists at the University of Waterloo in partnership with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) have created a wearable computer input device suitable for many possible applications, just by touching your fingertips in different ways.

Known as Tip-Tap, the device is inexpensive and is the first device of its kind that doesn’t require a battery or cumbersome wires to make it work. Tip-Tap uses radio frequency identification (RFID) tags to sense when fingertips touch. This technology, therefore, can be applied to disposable surgical gloves.

One of the most promising applications for Tip-Tap is in the surgical arena. Currently, operation digital preplanning is done by an assistant responsible for navigating the computer and communicating with the surgeon, but this is slow and difficult. With Tip-Tap in surgical gloves, surgeons could navigate the computer themselves from where they are, and it won’t affect their other actions like picking up the scalpel.

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