Scientists in Seoul have developed new technology which allows wearers of smart glasses to type text messages on virtual keyboards that pop up in their line of vision.

The K-Glass 3 smart glasses work using a stereo-vision camera, creating an effect similar to 3D sensing in human vision. Unlike Google Glass – which requires a touch panel and voice commands – the K-glass 3 is reinforced with augmented reality (AR), plus a low-power natural UI and UX processor, allowing typing and screen pointing on head-mounted displays (HMDs).

A demonstration video shows a K-Glass 3 wearer in the corner of the screen sitting at a desk and seemingly waving a finger in the air at nothing. However, on the big screen we see him scrolling through his email inbox, and opening individual messages. He then starts typing a text message on to a virtual typing keyboard seen only by him.

The AR used in the K-Glass 3 was first developed by Professor Hoi-Jun and the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) back in 2014. A second version was then released in 2015, followed by the K-Glass 3 in February 2016.

Here’s the really technical part. The UI and UX processor used is made up of super-deep cores which allow real-time scene recognition within 33 milliseconds. A rendering engine then transforms this into a display that users can see when wearing the K-Glass 3.

The stereo-vision camera is located at the front of the glasses. It has two lenses, each offering a horizontal display replicating the depth perception of the human eye. Both lenses take photos of the same objects or scene, and then the camera combines them to reconstruct a 3D environment using the spatial depth information.

When the glasses don’t detect motion from users, they become idle – while continuing to run algorithms on minimal power that will help to improve its performance, notes.

Professor Yoo said, “We have succeeded in fabricating a low-power multi-core processer that consumes only 126.1 milliwatts of power with a high efficiency rate. It is essential to develop a smaller, lighter, and low-power processor if we want to incorporate the widespread use of smart glasses and wearable devices into everyday life.

“K-Glass 3′s more intuitive UI and convenient UX permit users to enjoy enhanced AR experiences such as a keyboard or a better, more responsive mouse.”

It’s not just texters who will be thrilled by this new technology; musicians will also get a kick out of it as musical keyboards are also able to be seen through the K-Glass 3.

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