Computer games can be played using eye-tracking technology to control the action on screen. All players have to do is look at what they want to shoot. Two cameras record eye movements and send commands to the software. Swedish company Tobii has been working on this technology for 10 years, and it is already well established as an aid for disabled people.
Henrik Eskilsson, the CEO of Tobii, explains: “Before, humans had to learn how to communicate with the computer on the computer’s own terms. Now we are teaching the computer to communicate with humans on human terms.”
One use of this technology is typing: the author simply looks at keys displayed on the screen in order to press them. Now, the technology to do this can be easily integrated into normal computers, revolutionizing user-interface.
This type of software could, for example, know which word you are looking at on the screen, so it could scroll down the page automatically as you read.
Eye tracking can be used in combination with other control methods, like voice recognition or clicking on a touchpad. You could look at an icon you want to open and click on the touchpad to open the programme.
Henrik Eskilsson said: “It is possible that you will still have a mouse for some very specialised things but eye control is going to used a lot more than the mouse in a few years time.”
The developers are also integrating the system into normal glasses, which will become a portable technology to be used with any computer.
The system could also be used in cars, to detect whether the driver is paying attention or whether their eyes are drifting away from the road.