Ideum's 100" Multi-Touch Table Supports 50 Users: Air Hockey, Anyone? - HotHardware
Ideum's 100" Multi-Touch Table Supports 50 Users: Air Hockey, Anyone?

Ideum's 100" Multi-Touch Table Supports 50 Users: Air Hockey, Anyone?

With the release of Windows 7, a whole lot of talk surrounding multi-touch has surfaced. In fact, most credit Microsoft's own Surface as the catalyst for more consumer-oriented multi-touch applications, and now it's a relatively unknown outfit take the next big step. Ideum, a company you've probably never heard of, is looking to make a name for itself by introducing what could be called the next Surface.

The currently unnamed device--which is being called an "ultra-wide screen multitouch table exhibit exploring the electromagnetic spectrum"--is based around the company's MT-50 multi-touch, multi-user table. Clearly this one is designed to be used by businesses more so than actual consumers (unless you've got a 20,000 square foot home just dying for a few new accessories), with a 16x5 aspect ratio and a display resolution of 2304x800. All told, it's a 100" surface with an 86" viewable area, making it one of the largest contiguous multi-touch tables ever made.

It was developed for the Space Chase Gallery at the Adventure Science Center, and it'll be a part of an exhibit that opens up to the public on November 7th. The table can support over 50 simultaneous touch points, enabling a whole bunch of onlookers to touch and interact with it at once. So much for waiting in line for your turn, huh? The software on it was based around Adobe's Flash and the company's own GestureWorks framework, the latter of which will be on sale to other devs in early December. There's no word on just how expensive this thing would be for the average joe, but we're guessing it'd be way out of most budgets, anyway.


Ideum creates an ultra-wide screen multitouch table exhibit exploring the
electromagnetic spectrum


CORRALES, New Mexico (October 29, 2009) Ideum announces the installation of
an ultra-wide screen multitouch table based on its commercially available
MT-50 multi-touch, multi-user table.

With a 100" surface and an 86" viewable area is it among one of the largest
contiguous multitouch tables ever developed. The screen has a 16 x 5 ratio
aspect and a display resolution of 2304 x 800 pixels.

Developed for the Space Chase Gallery at the Adventure Science Center, it is
one of several technology-enhanced exhibits Ideum has deployed at the
Nashville, Tennessee-based hands-on science center. The exhibition opens to
the public on November 7th.

"We developed a visual representation of the EM Spectrum," said Jim
Spadaccini, Creative Director of Ideum. "Taking advantage of the super-wide
screen format, we've created a digital representation of the EM Spectrum
from radio waves to gamma rays. Visitors can move images across the table in
real-time, revealing the images in each waveform and accessing information
about what they are seeing.?

The exhibit features a variety of celestial and terrestrial objects images
in a multiple wavelengths.  For example, NASA images of the sun can be seen
in all wavelengths.  Common and iconic objects were photographed in a
variety of wavelengths. For example, a birthday cake with lit candles, a toy
robot, an alarm clock, and even a hand holding an iPhone are seen in
visible, infrared, ultraviolet, and x-ray.

The table can support over 50 simultaneous touch points, allowing several
people to interact with the table at the same time. Its rugged design makes
it perfect for a busy hands-on science center. In addition, the table is
only 31" tall, meeting ADA standards for wheel chair accessibility.

The custom software was developed with Adobe Flash and Ideum's own
GestureWorks framework, which allows Flash developers to easily develop
their own custom multi-touch applications. GestureWorks will be available
for sale to other developers in early December.

The tracking software was developed by Natural User Interface Technologies
AB, a Swedish technology company specializing in multi-touch software. Ideum
and NUI Technologies have been partners since 2008.

Ideum was founded in 1999. Its exhibits and Websites have won numerous
awards over the years including: the American Association of Museums' MUSE
Awards, the Webby Awards, the Pirelli International Multimedia Awards, the
Museums and the Web Conference "Best of the Web," and other industry awards.
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"Supports 50 users... if you pack them around and on top of the thing like college students in a phone booth." 50-touch points, not users.

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50 people, all sticking one finger in there to see what's up. That's possible, right?

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By my calculations, there's less than 24' of surface area around the perimeter of the table.

You might be able to get 50 individual's fingers on the table (if everyone turns sideways, they're all kids, and half of them have a growth disorder where their arm-lengths equal to their height), but they won't be able to actually play anything practical.  Hehe

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Or 5 people using all 10 fingers at the same time. Or 2.5 people using fingers and toes. I'd personally like to see that. It would need a twister program then (left pinky toe.....RED!).

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