Form 9.B Project Summary

Chron: 972396

Proposal Number: 12.03-2567

Project Title: Gesture Based Multimedia Information Kiosk to Enhance Science Understanding

Technical Abstract (Limit 200 words)

We propose the development of a public kiosk information system to interact with customers, such as the general public and school children, allowing them to learn about and study programs developed by the Human Exploration and evelopment of Space program in innovative and exciting ways. People will access the kiosk's multimedia information through gesture recognition technology. The self-contained kiosk will contain information updateable on site or through the Internet, and protected against theft and tampering. The information in each kiosk will be tailored to specific audiences and be placed in appropriate locations, such as grade schools, universities, research centers, and public administrative and commercial centers. Using gestures as the kiosk interface has many practical advantages over other forms of input, such as speech or keyboard, including longer input device life (no moving parts), improved hygiene, less system degradation due to noisy environments, and a more intuitive command interface. The goal of the Phase I effort is to design a kiosk using standard video and an inexpensive PC-based multimedia system. Gesture commands will be processed in real-time, with the inputs transformed into information retrieval commands, thus giving the kiosk a "futuristic feel" which has always been associated with NASA.

Potential Commercial Applications (Limit 200 words)

Kiosks are in use almost everywhere, from mall information sites to movie theater ticket purchasing areas. But currently none of them uses gesture recognition, instead relying on unsanitary touch screens or buttons that can break off or get jammed. These kiosks are also unsanitary due to the large number of people who touch the screen or poke the buttons. Our proposed multimedia kiosk, which will use gesture recognition as its mode of input, can be used in all of these places. In addition, such a gesture recognition system could make banking at Automated Teller Machines more intuitive and user friendly. Indeed, automobiles could have built in gesture recognition systems to control various functions (such as the radio, or a map interface). Such gestural control would be more appropriate in an automobile over other forms of control. No need to worry about noise drowning out a voice recognition system, or having the driver loose concentration on the road while searching for appropriate buttons to touch. Finally, if hand and body motions (gestures) can be recognized, then the kiosk could also serve as a surveillance camera, tracking suspicious activity and alerting security when something suspicious takes place.

Name and Address of Principal Investigator (Name,

Organization Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip)

Charles J. Cohen, Ph.D.

Cybernet Systems Corporation

727 Airport Boulevard

Ann Arbor , MI 48108

Name and Address of Offeror (Firm Name, Mail Address,

City/State/Zip)

Heidi N. Jacobus

Cybernet Systems Corporation

727 Airport Boulevard

Ann Arbor , MI 48108