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1. International Journal of Computer Engineering and Technology (IJCET), ISSN 0976-6367(Print), INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF COMPUTER ENGINEERING & ISSN 0976 - 6375(Online), Volume 4, Issue 5, September - October (2013), © IAEME TECHNOLOGY (IJCET) ISSN 0976 – 6367(Print) ISSN 0976 – 6375(Online) Volume 4, Issue 5, September – October (2013), pp. 217-223 © IAEME: www.iaeme.com/ijcet.asp Journal Impact Factor (2013): 6.1302 (Calculated by GISI) www.jifactor.com IJCET ©IAEME UBIQUTOUS COMPUTING ENABLED IN DAILY LIFE AAKASH SHAH1, GAUTAMI NADKARNI2, NAMITA RANE3, DIVYA VIJAN4 1, 2, 3, 4 Fellow, EXTC, DJSCOE, Mumbai, India ABSTRACT Keyboards, mouse, touch screens! What next? We believe that the most important part of technology behind any successful product is its user-centricity. The way we humans interact with machines and electronic devices has changed dramatically over the last few years. User experiences are evolving, getting friendlier and increasingly personalized. Embedded systems form the core of everyday electronics. To control these systems, a competent human interface is needed. The proposed interface should be able to control myriad range of systems such as computers, entertainment systems and electrical systems. Thus we present herein a new interface which consists of a controller worn on the wrist that optically scans the fingers as well as the palm of the hand and is compatible with the above mentioned. Motioning with the hand and pointing a finger at an intended target can act as a variety of input methods like the click of a mouse, playing a game or turning on a light. Since these changes are brought about virtually by the movement of the hand without actual physical contact, the proposed device can therefore be called wearable personal virtual controller. Keywords: Ubiquitous, Computing, Reflectance Scanner, Personal Controller, Wearable Device, Embedded System, Wireless Radio. 1.0 INTRODUCTION With advancements in technology, consumer electronics are becoming smaller and smaller while at the same time increasing the number features packed into it. To tap into the power of these applications, an intuitive interface is required. This human interface is provided by a personal controller which uses optical reflectance to scan the hand and fingers thus rendering the hand free of obstructions (See Figure 1). The personal controller can interface with a host of system application using infrared or radio signals. In addition to the current input methods, the personal controller can be used with the help of supporting drivers for controlling the systems. For the successful utilization 217
International Journal of Computer Engineering and Technology (IJCET), ISSN 0976-6367(Print), ISSN 0976 - 6375(Online), Volume 4, Issue 5, September - October (2013), © IAEME of a novel interface standard, it must be extremely easy to use and simple to set up. The gadget must be comfortable to be worn all day and must not restrict the fundamental functions of the hand. Figure 1. Optical Reflectance Scanning 2.0 UBIQUITOUS COMPUTING The dictionary definition of the word ubiquitous is something that exists everywhere. Thus, Ubiquitous computing is a highly developed computing concept where computing is made to appear everywhere and anywhere. In order to be compatible, an interface device must be cross-platform compliant. The personal controller can be activated and switched off using simple hand gestures, a mechanical switch or by using voice commands. Most of the interactions which occur daily in a human life include those at Home, Office and Automobiles. Thus, the proposed wearable device can be used everywhere with ease and therefore, qualifies as ubiquitous computing technology. 2.1 Home Different applications, within a home, that can be controlled by the wearable device include entertainment systems like the television and audio systems, lighting, various consumer electronics, ambience regulating systems like air conditioners, and security features. Our device replicates the functionality of wireless enabled displays such as the one from View Sonic (See Figure 2) which is capable of controlling all these essential functions. Figure 2. A Viewsonic Display with Controller and Base Station 218
International Journal of Computer Engineering and Technology (IJCET), ISSN 0976-6367(Print), ISSN 0976 - 6375(Online), Volume 4, Issue 5, September - October (2013), © IAEME 2.2 Office Constant use of the keyboard and the mouse may serve as the root cause for ailments like Carpal-Tunnel Syndrome which is characterized by numbness and pain in the fingers. This may lead to a loss of productivity because most of the tasks in an office are carried out using a computer. Germ transmission is another major concern plaguing offices. If the proposed personal controller could be used to push an elevator button, open a door, and can be interfaced with a computer, the amount of physical contact with everyday objects will be greatly reduced, thereby eliminating the above issues. 2.3 Automotive Another sphere where ubiquitous computing can be put into use is in the Automotive Sector. The device can imitate the Remote Keyless Entry, used to open automobile doors without physical contact. The device can also be used to control the various dashboard features like controlling the music system or taking directions from the GPS system using minimal gestures which otherwise would require active attention of the driver thus enabling complete concentration on the road. 3.0 VIRTUAL CONTROL The concept of virtual control was to run a virtual environment within a computer simulation. Previous attempts to realize such a virtual control included the gloved devices which were not feasible. To overcome this shortcoming, we generate an image of the hand and fingers by means of our device thereby obviating the restrictions of wearing a glove or being connected to a wired harness and provide an unencumbered profile. As seen in Figure 1, each finger has a range for motion sensing and light button selection. A cursor can be controlled by hand or finger movements as defined in the accompanying personal controller software. Since the device is able to scan various hand configurations, it can be very helpful for people with disabilities. 4.0 HARDWARE The fundamental component of this technology is a wrist-worn device that employs light beams to scan the hand and its digits. The reflected outline of the hand is analyzed in order to produce inputs for the host system. These input parameters are then wirelessly transmitted to a base station, which may either be connected to the host via a USB connection or wirelessly through infrared or radio waves. The features of the wrist-worn gadget incorporate the ability to point and click in a hands free way that senses shapes and gestures such as moving the hand up or down in order to adjust audio volume or lighting brightness in a wireless fashion. 4.1 Infrared/Radio Wireless communication protocols presently include Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth and Infrared Remote Control and Zigbee. Using these wireless standards, it is possible to establish communication between the wearable device and the base station or the host system. 4.2 Low Power Consumption The most crucial aspect for any portable gadget is a good battery life. As a result, power saving algorithms and an efficient idle mode must be incorporated. Also only relevant information must be sent from the device thus disabling the radios when not needed. 219
International Journal of Computer Engineering and Technology (IJCET), ISSN 0976-6367(Print), ISSN 0976 - 6375(Online), Volume 4, Issue 5, September - October (2013), © IAEME 5.0 SHAPE-SENSING The scanning mechanism should be capable of recognizing a range of gestures and shapes. The detection and processing of the various hand gestures and movements is done in real time by the personal controller device. Thus the amount of signal processing and image processing required at the base station greatly reduces, thus escalating the speed of the input. The positioning of the sensor can be possible in two waysFirst, an individual emitter-sensor pair can be located along each finger to sense the digit movements, or an array of smaller sensor-emitter pairs can be employed which gives a better resolution but at a greater price. The second arrangement also increases te amount of signal processing required due to the increased number of sensors. To track the hand movements, a gyroscope can be used. A gyroscope gives an accurate measurement of the hand in the 3-axis plane and the co-ordinates obtained can be used to plot the hand movements. Along with the gyroscope a tilt sensor can also be used for better accuracy. With the variation in angle and position of the reflecting element, that is the finger, measurements are taken by the optical reflectance principle in the form of change in light intensity from the reflected light beam. The wrist X angle is measured and used to calculate column offset, enabling finger tracking. The wrist Y angle is used to adjust button threshold level, to create a uniform keystroke gesture anywhere within the active optical field. A cone shaped fan array of optical emitter/receiver pairs exploits the cupped geometry of a hand at rest. Proper location of the cone apex underneath the wrist is crucial to avoid saturating the optical receivers with near-field reflections on the heel of the hand. 6.0 GESTURE RECOGNITION Hands have conventionally been a crucial part of the communication process. Hand gestures can be instrumental in non-verbal communication and can be used to convey information. These basic hand gestures can be recognized by the personal wearable controller. All machine inputs are synthesized by emulating hand gestures. For instance, a keystroke can be one of the gestures. Keyboards, joysticks and mice may be emulated, as they are universally understood; however, the power of gesture recognition can be clearly demonstrated by sign language. Hardware engineers face the problem of capturing the real time conversations in sign language. Both hands are typically used for signing, and the benefits of wrist-worn sensor arrays are realized. Accuracy achieved using optical sensors greatly enhances the processing of the data obtained by the array. The input device can utilize plain, one-handed gestures as well to direct itself. For example, the function of a wrist-worn device is extended to daily life when simple, unique gestures are used to engage and disengage the device. It is easy to switch between the emulation modes, wherein one can toggle between the device acting as a light switch and a television remote. 7.0 SOFTWARE A hardware platform like the controller cannot function on its own without codes to run them. Coding thus becomes an essential facet of any device. For coding the personal controller, efficient low level languages have been put into use. Standardized Drivers have been used wherever possible, in order to maintain compatibility with existing technology. Windows OS has been used to create specialized applications to personalize the controller according to need. The controller supports platform independent embedded and standalone applications as well. 220
International Journal of Computer Engineering and Technology (IJCET), ISSN 0976-6367(Print), ISSN 0976 - 6375(Online), Volume 4, Issue 5, September - October (2013), © IAEME 7.1 Embedded Software embedded into the wrist-worn device is written in ANSI C, and gate-array Boolean, state machine and Digital Signal Processing implementations are written in VHDL. Uniform code facilitates optimal portability, maintenance and continuing engineering. Ballistics calculations include standardized algorithms referenced from development systems (e.g. Linux, Microsoft and Apple, among others). 7.2 Device driver The initial device driver for the personal controller at initialization of the USB interface is acknowledged as a Human Interface Device (HID) mouse, a standard offered on most operating systems. The USB HID base station delivers packets to the target device that default to standard mouse packets: Four 8-bit bytes representing: Buttons, X-vector, Y-vector, Scroll. Additionally, standard HID VR-Glove packets are supported (finger angles). Special applications requiring raw vectors will be disclosed under license, and will facilitate “bug-vision” shape image scanning for environmental capture. Device drivers are written in C Language, but are typically host-system dependent. Device drivers may be simple relay devices or may include additional input processing if the host system permits. In order to be compatible with a myriad range of system, device drivers must be crossplatform compliant and must be a thin layer of code; the thinner the layer the better. 7.3 Additional Software New devices will only be adopted if they are compatible with older applications while providing numerous new features. Using the Human Interface Driver, the persona controller can perform various functions like emulating a mouse or a keyboard. Additional software is required to make the controller work as a keyboard which is as seen in figure 4. Figure 4. Onscreen Keyboard in Outlook Application 221
International Journal of Computer Engineering and Technology (IJCET), ISSN 0976-6367(Print), ISSN 0976 - 6375(Online), Volume 4, Issue 5, September - October (2013), © IAEME 8.0 NOVEL APPLICATIONS In order to fully utilize the potential of the controller in varied fields like Gaming and Medical Sterility, specialized softwares need to be created. As a result these applications come into a new category of special applications which are explained further. 8.1 Gaming/Simulation One of the most obvious fields in which the wearable personal controller can be put to use is gaming. Gaming usually requires input controllers like joysticks or keyboards. The personal controller can emulate the working of a joystick and thus cutting on the need of additional pieces of hardware required to enjoy a game. The wearable controller can provide a new way of interaction to the gamers with their systems. Furthermore, new games can. 8.2 Medical/Sterile The crux of ubiquitous computing is the elimination of actual contact with tools and equipment. By this virtue, the problems of sterility faced by medical professionals and their support staff can be tackled. This technology offers a ‘sterile’ interface which permits data to be entered and retrieved without bodily touch. By obviating the need for touching the equipment, there will be a discernible drop in germ transmission. Additionally, by getting rid of hardware like mechanical switches, maintenance cost will reduce. This technology will also prove to be advantageous for the patients seeing that they will be able to utilize the onscreen menus with limited amount of effort and motion. 8.3 Sign Language Translation Since the personal controller is capable of sensing diverse shapes and movements, the next advancement of the technology is to translate Sign Language (SL). Eventually the device and specialized software will be able to translate sign language and emit the spoken word via the speaker located in the device. This will assist those who have speaking problems and allow them to assimilate into normal society. Consequently, the mute and those with speech impairments will be able to tackle the problems related to their disabilities by means of the device and dedicated software capable of translating sign language and emit the spoken word via the speaker located in the device. 9.0 CONCLUSION The personal controller technology presented in this paper will not only change the way one perceives human computer interactions but also metamorphose the way people interact with their electronics. Irrespective of the user being capable or with a limitation, human interactions with electronics will become more intuitive and proficient. The want for all those remote controls will become obsolete. Owing to the simplicity of this technology, little comprehension is needed for its application. Thus ubiquitous technology bears the potential to replacing the existing interface technology and change the face of human machine interactions. 10.0 REFERENCES  edutechwiki.unige.ch/en/Ubiquitous_computing.  http://ccit333.wikispaces.com/Ubiquitous+Computing  http://www.ubiqcomputing.org/Overview.pdf 222
International Journal of Computer Engineering and Technology (IJCET), ISSN 0976-6367(Print), ISSN 0976 - 6375(Online), Volume 4, Issue 5, September - October (2013), © IAEME  http://webhosting.about.com/od/Web-Hosting-Basics/a/Understanding-The-Concept-OfUbiquitous-Computing.htm  Abowd, G.D., & Mynatt, E.D. (March, 2000). Charting past, present, and future research in ubiquitous computing. ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction, 7, pp. 29–58.  A. Toney, B. Mulley, B. Thomas, W. Pierkarski.“Minimum Social Weight User Interactions for Wearable Computers in Business Suits,” IEEE Sixth International Symposium on Wearable Computers (ISWC) 2002.  T. Starner and A. Pentland. “Real-time American Sign Language”  Bruce Howard and M.G. Howard. “Ubiquitous Computing Enabled by Optical Reflectance Controller”.  Soamil Vora, Monil Shah, Jigar Kapadia and Gautami Nadkarni, “Computer Independent Device For Usb Data Transfer”, International Journal of Advanced Research in Engineering & Technology (IJARET), Volume 4, Issue 5, 2013, pp. 56 - 62, ISSN Print: 0976-6480, ISSN Online: 0976-6499.  Archita Agnihotri, “Vital Jacket a Wearable Monitoring System with SMS Facility”, International Journal of Electronics and Communication Engineering & Technology (IJECET), Volume 4, Issue 1, 2013, pp. 161 - 175, ISSN Print: 0976- 6464, ISSN Online: 0976 –6472. 223
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