CityWall LCD lets users get touchy-feely

A 3D version of CityWall multitouch LCD debuts in Finland.

Three-dimensional orbs are the way of the future. MultiTouch

Multitouch technology really does seem to be the next big thing as far as computer interfaces go. The iPhone has it implemented, Microsoft is embedding the tech into Windows 7, and Finnish company MultiTouch recently announced multitouch LCDs.

On Friday, the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology, or HIIT (not be confused with high-intensity interval training), launched a new 3D version of its multitouch display called CityWall.

When I say "3D" I mean it's 3D as far as the graphics on the screen go, but not in the way seen in Minority Report. We're still a ways off from that.

By using a rear-projection system involving multiple cameras, projectors, and infrared sensors, the technology is able to track as many fingers and hands as can fit on the screen--and uniquely identify them.

This 3D version of CityWall is now in use at the Lasipalatsi media center in Helsinki, Finland. Currently the screen is being used for an interactive exhibition that focuses on the benefits and nuisances of urban nature. The exhibition will reportedly remain at Lasipalatsi permanently, so if you happen to be weaving your way through Northern Europe at some point, you might want to drop in.

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