Feeds

Geeks play Guitar Hero without guitars

Muscle movement replaces button bashing

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

We’ve all been air-guitar gods at some point in our lives. But now a band of boffins have proven that you don’t need frets, a pick or even a controller to be a Guitar Hero.

Nerds from Microsoft, the University of Washington and the University of Toronto have jointly developed a “muscle/computer interface” able to control the music videogame without using the traditional four-buttoned plastic guitar.

Can't see the video? Download Flash Player from Adobe.com

The system – albeit in its early, lab-based days – is essentially a combination of sensors and gesture recognition software, the latter allowing the gamer to control Guitar Hero using a series of predefined movements.

A ring of sensors around the player’s forearm pick up muscle movements from the surface of the skin. This process, the video (above) describes, is called electromyography.

guitar_hero_muscle_01

The muscle computer interface does away with all that unnecessary button bashing

These signals then work with gesture-detecting software to ensure that when, for example, the gamer touches their index finger to their thumb, Guitar Hero interprets the movement as though they were touching the red button on the game’s plastic guitar.

Strumming, usually achieved on Guitar Hero by flexing the plastic guitar’s strummer switch, is now replicated when the gamer uses their left arm to strum an invisible guitar.

Sticking a variety of sensors about your person just to become an air-guitar god won’t work for everyone, so the developers are also working on a wireless system that could be integrated into an arm band.

guitar_hero_muscle_02

A wireless version of the Muscle computer interface is also in development

Sadly, no plans to release the tech as a peripheral have been announced. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Apple to build WORLD'S BIGGEST iStore in Dubai
It's not the size of your shiny-shiny...
Just in case? Unverified 'supersize me' iPhone 6 pics in sneak leak peek
Is bigger necessarily better for the fruity firm's flagship phone?
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
Apple analyst: fruity firm set to shift 75 million iPhones
We'll have some of whatever he's having please
TV transport tech, part 1: From server to sofa at the touch of a button
You won't believe how much goes into today's telly tech
The agony and ecstasy of SteamOS: WHERE ARE MY GAMES?
And yes it does need a fat HDD (or SSD, it's cool with either)
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?