Wednesday 28th April, 2010
Next generation Suma technology the key to new 3D world
New interface designed to offer innovative and ergonomic navigation for 3D applications and software
Cambridge Consultants, a leading technology product design and development firm, today unveiled the eagerly anticipated second phase of its innovative Suma enabled technology. With more and more internet, computer and gaming based applications being displayed in 3D, this flexible platform technology offers enhanced functionality for PC peripherals, giving users a futuristic level of navigation. Enabling full analogue control from all fingers and thumb, the latest Suma technology has been developed into an ergonomic “Suma mouse” concept, showcasing its versatility and ability to unlock the human sense of touch when interacting with next generation applications.
Unlike a traditional mouse, the new Suma mouse concept makes the “click, pan, zoom, tilt” manoeuvres required when browsing a 3D environment a much more intuitive and natural experience. Squeezing, stroking, rotating and pressing the Suma skin will all give an individual reaction on screen.
With everyday applications such as Google Maps and Street View now rendering in three dimensions, there is a growing demand for the right interface to exploit their potential. When using a Suma enabled mouse, there are no set boundaries for how to hold it or where to place your fingers. A “Suma skin” enabled mouse can recognise how the user is holding it and wherever they have placed their fingers, making it a comfortable and natural process.
While consumers are now familiar with gesture-based controls and motion feedback, these do not fully exploit the subtlety and flexibility of our hands’ control capabilities to the degree Suma technology can. With this increased versatility, and without the requirement for distinct and separate buttons, the next generation of 3D computer and gaming devices can be much more ergonomic in their design.
Moving on from the squeezable interface débuted at CES 2010, the new Suma platform can be implemented in any shape, from mouse to joystick, integrating an analogue deformation sensor within the device. The sensor network can be tuned to each application, including resolution, sensitivity and stiffness of the deformable layer and active area. The Suma skin can be integrated at an incremental parts cost of less than US$1, allowing it to be designed into conventional controllers, as opposed to specialist equipment.
“Many existing mainstream 2D applications are now rendering in three dimensions, for example Google Street View. Yet despite this rise, consumers have been lacking an interface to elegantly navigate a three dimensional environment” said Duncan Smith, head of Consumer Product Development at Cambridge Consultants. “The second concept of Suma is equally applicable to today’s technology as it is tomorrow’s 3D displays. About one quarter of the motor cortex of your brain is dedicated to the muscles in your hands. No other technology captures the power of this the way Suma does.”
The latest Suma technology platform will be demonstrated for the first time at Booth #28, Front End of Innovation 2010 conference, May 3-5, 2010 at the Seaport World Trade Center Boston.
Cambridge Consultants develops breakthrough products, creates and licenses intellectual property, and provides business consultancy in technology critical issues for clients worldwide. For more than 50 years, the company has been helping its clients turn business opportunities into commercial successes, whether they are launching first-to-market products, entering new markets or expanding existing markets through the introduction of new technologies. With a team of more than 380 staff, including engineers, scientists, mathematicians and designers, in offices in Cambridge (UK), Boston (USA) and Singapore, Cambridge Consultants offers solutions across a diverse range of industries including medical technology, industrial and consumer products, transport, energy, cleantech and wireless communications.
Cambridge Consultants is part of Altran, a global leader in innovation and high-tech engineering consulting which supports companies in the creation and development of their new products and services. With a staff of 20,000 employees in more than 20 countries, the Group generated revenues of €1,456m in 2012. For more information visit: www.altran.com
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