2nd day of Hackex-i and creativity at Barcelona Design Centre

After a full day of prototyping with the Gestoos SDK at the Barcelona Design Centre (BCD) the Hackex-i teams were ready to showcase their demos for the competition. Here are their inspiring ideas for future, gesture-enabled products and services.

Let’s start with the team that focused on the automotive industry. When driving a car, you could answer a call with a single hand gesture signifying ‘phone’ while having the other hand on the steering wheel. Or, you could make a gesture to initiate a phone call to a previously saved frequent contact, your wife or kid for instance. Rejecting a call and sending an automatic message “I am driving and will get back to you later” is also simple, performed with a single hand gesture in their demo.

Moving on to home automation (also called ‘domotics’) we saw a beautiful prototype of a floor lamp from the guys from SIMON. Users can change the lamp’s colour and adjust light intensity using a combination of intuitive hand gestures. What is even more interesting in this concept is the possibility of controlling more than one light by simply pointing at it, creating a more atmospheric home environment.

We also saw a proof of concept for using gestures to communicate sign language. The sign, performed with the right gesture, is interpreted by a program that ‘reads’ out the corresponding word. One can see the potential of such a program for educational purposes as well as other use cases.

The judges had quite some trouble assigning a winner with so many great ideas and prototypes. Considering concept as well as the technical implementation, the second prize was given to the team that created a fun game of Pong for children. Players can move the paddle up and down by raising their hands as well as use gestures to start, pause and quit the game. So there is really no need for a wand or a remote control of any sorts to play this game. More games like this can be created based on the same principles, also encouraging physical exercise. We certainly enjoyed playing it!

Finally, the winning prototype was chosen on the basis of its business potential and cultural context. The team of Iga Pielichowska, Xiao Lin and Carles Carmona Calpe created a prototype for bus stops in Barcelona. Visitors and locals can interact with a display using gestures to explore local landmarks and events. In addition, the system could potentially recognise people’s gender based on their body shape and display more relevant advertising. Congratulations to the team and we all hope to see this city discovery service appear at Barcelona bus stops anytime soon!

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