My Magic Hands

13 Apr

Any chance you remember seeing this little Korean spot a couple years back? I did, although it took me almost an hour of searching through my facebook links to find the sucker. (FACEBOOK! why can’t I easily see a list of all my links and put a search term in to find what I am looking for? I have only two friends who work for facebook, so I guess this lament is rather worthless. Anyway…)

I remembered it as a Samsung phone, but it wasn’t one. Now it turns out that the new Samsung phone has come out with similar functionality (says James, I haven’t seen it yet). Nonetheless, this kind of gesture-based, eye tracking (the Samsung version) device control technology is all still cutting edge. At least in the mainstream for us common folk.

So it seems that James and I have a similar problem. We both cook, although I guess James favors complicated sweets like Black Forest cakes, and I favor things like Indian curries and folded savory pastries. Egal, as we say in German. The fact is, you’re there in the kitchen, up to your elbows in something sticky or spicy or gooey or just foodish and you are closely following some recipe…some very long recipe…on your iPad…which has become a requisite kitchen tool because you loath printing out every recipe these days….and you need to SCROLL further. The critical next step is below the fold and if you wash your hands just to move the cursor down the screen ONE MORE TIME you will scream.

So James, as a software programmer, decided to DO something about this. He created a gesture-based control layer for a browser. Well, to be fair, for a Google search function.

Ok, it’s very early days. It needs some work. But APPLE accepted it into their store. Which I know is no small feat. If you want to test this thing out, James is even willing to offer it to you for free in the Apple store for a few days – to begin soon…I’ll tell you when I know more. (James…that screenshot on your app page…it’s gotta go. You need screenshots of your APP, not the Wikipedia page you were looking at when you invented the app. And how did your Black Forest Cake come out anyway?)

Hands free browser in Itunes store

Hands free browser in Itunes store

Ultimately, this little browser will give you what it gave me. Magic Hands. You wave your hand in front of the camera (a little translucent photo of you in the corner helps you get some orientation on your gesture – check me out…trying to figure this all out, and the screen bumps up or bumps down based on what you are trying to do. In this case, looking for a recipe for tomato, shrimp and vodka pasta. Which is what was for dinner tonight. Except with salmon. And cognac.

Hands Free Browser
Hands Free Browser

Hands Free Browser

As I said, it’s early days and basic. It needs work – James, will send you a bullet point list of where you need to make some changes in my opinion – but it’s pretty impressive for a quick start. Your screen will move without you touching the screen. It’s a bit choppy, and sometimes up can also equal down…if you are too fast or when you run out of space and have to RAISE your hands in order to lower them again…but IT WORKS.

We at diginibble, (me, myself, and I) will keep you up to date as things develop. No need to go out and buy that Korean phone just yet….;-) Just go grab James’ app. Which, in case you’re interested, is available here. And in case you are wondering (cause I did), it is rated 17+ not because there are exciting pictures with naked folks embedded somewhere within, but because Apple makes you rate your app this way if it accesses web pages…anything outside the native app itself.

News alert: I hear that version 1.1 is now available in the app store and that 1.1.1 will be coming in about a week. Also, at the end of April there will be three days of *free.* That’s right, you heard me, you won’t even need to pay the 99 cents, it’ll be FREE. (Don’t tell anyone…April 26 to 29. Oh alright, I take it back…tell everyone.)

1 Comment

Posted by on April 13, 2013 in Food + Technology, Technology


Tags: , , ,

One response to “My Magic Hands

  1. James

    April 15, 2013 at 12:11 am

    Suggestions duly noted – thanks! The new version currently working its way into the app store will contain some of them. The next version will function as a proper browser, so you can enter URLs and search terms.

    The Black Forest cake was delicious, although I didn’t put enough effort into the presentation. I was just grateful that the thing rose, so I slapped cherries and cream all over it without much thought. Next time!

    Today I tested the latest version with some Finnish expats and some traditional Finnish recipes, and both app and baked goods worked well. The quality assurance process for this app is definitely the tastiest I’ve been through!


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