The computer mouse is designed in such a way that moving it and clicking its buttons require some fine motor skills. For amputees who wear prosthetics, not having fine motor skills can be an obstacle in working efficiently with a computer. To make the process of interacting with a computer using a mouse much more easier, David Kaltenbach, Lucas Rex, and Maximilian Mahal of Weißensee Academy of Art in Berlin have conceived a new device called Shortcut, which is essentially a wearable device worn on the prosthetic arm that helps control a mouse.
Shortcut is connected via Bluetooth to a Myo, which reads muscle activities and converts them to
signals. These signals are then sent to the prosthetic arm to make required gestures. Shortcut itself consists of a round device attached to a silicon band that can be wrapped around the prosthetic arm. Internally it has Bluetooth which connects to the computer, an optical sensor (same sensor that is in a mouse) that reads arm movements and converts them to mouse movement on the screen. The gestures created by the prosthetic arm are translated into activity on the computer. For example, touching the thumb and index finger is left click, touching thumb and middle finger is right click, clenching wrist is zooming in and out, etc. Check out the gallery below to see all the gestures Shortcut can identify.
Shortcut is still a prototype , and the inventors hope to create a new prototype, test, and bring Shortcut to life soon. Watch the video below to learn more about Shortcut.
Source: Fast Company