Cool! See Your Hands in VR Using a Leap Motion Controller
If you have tried Virtual Reality, you already know that you can’t see your hands. With the Leap Motion Controller you get an entirely new and different immersive experience. The Leap Motion Controller is a small dongle device that you attach to the front of your Virtual Reality headsets. The dongle connects to your PC via an extended USB cable that is provided by Leap Motion. After installing the software on your PC, you then use the dongle to scan your hand motions so that it fully recognises the position and rotation of your hands. Once its up and running, it is really a lot of fun to play around with.
So how does it work?
The Leap Motion Controller is designed to provide a high level of precision and control such as pinching and gesturing to control objects in VR. The dongle works using a combination of LED and IR light to capture 200 frames per second of reflected spatial data. This spatial data effectively recognises the motion and movements of your hands so that you can grasp, throw and touch things in VR. The only drawback is that you can not feel anything.
Using Gravity with the Leap Motion Controller and more
One of the really cool apps that you can download and try is called gravity. The idea is that you are in a space station of some sort and can try out a variety of experiences in different rooms. In one room, you can catch and throw a variety of objects which is both fun and really challenging. Once you get good at it, you can then move to a much more challenging room where there are objects that have some sort of propulsion or thrust. Your goal is to learn how to control these objects to get them to hit a larger objects. It sounds easy but honestly its fairly challenging and really entertaining at the same time.
The great thing is that Leap Motion also has a Software Development Kit so that you can develop a wide variety of appliations to create whatever you can imagine. You could play music, fly through the air, or could probably even create a VR app to teach you slight of hand to do magic! Why not?
Overall we are really impressed with the Leap Motion Controller and the entire experience of using your hands to be controllers in Virtual Reality. Its great being able to use your hands for a large variety of tasks without having to memorise a bunch of buttons on a controller. Its definitely a much more natural experience that we hope and believe will be the future of interactive and immersive VR.