California - A recently-published patent granted to Google last year for methods of conveying and gathering digital information with a user's hand could form the basis for a computerized glove counterpart to the company's Google Glasses currently en route to the marketplace.
U.S. Patent Number 8,009,141, aptly titled "Seeing with your hand," covers methods like using a detector to record a series of images of an environment and detecting a predetermined motion by comparing two or more images in the series.
The patented methods may also include selecting a function based on the predetermined motion and triggering the function, using a first detector to record a first series of images of an environment and using a second detector to record a second series of images of an environment.
The method of detecting a predetermined relative motion by comparing one or more images from the first series with one or more images from the second series, and selecting or triggering a function based on the predetermined relative motion, is also covered by the patent.
The central claim of the patent is a glove, comprising a detector positioned on a fingertip which is configured to record a series of images of an environment, coupled with a a processor configured to stabilize the series of images to produce a stabilized series of images, and an output interface configured to trigger at least one function.
The processor also determines at least one predetermined motion of the detector by comparing at least two images in the stabilized series of images and, based on the predetermined motion, selects at least one function from a plurality of functions.
In one example cited in the patent summary, to allow a user to "see" an inaccessible environment, a user may wear a device equipped with one or more detectors on one of his or her hands, or on other areas of the user's body.
The detectors may record a series of images of the environment, and a display may display the series of images to the user. In this manner, the user may "see" the inaccessible environment as if the user's eyes were located on the user's hand or finger, or on the other area of the user's body, the patent summary says.
Inventors Liang-Yu Chi of San Francisco, California, Robert Allen Ryskamp of Zurich, Switzerland, Luis Ricardo Prada Gomez of Hayward, California, Harvey Ho of Mountain View, California and Google top dog Sergey Brin of Palo Alto, California filed their application for the patent in March 2011, and had it granted in August 2011.