Carnegie Mellon University is a name that is renowned for its inventions as the institute has produced many researchers and inventors over the period of time. Here comes another discovery from the same institute where researchers have found that if you install two inexpensive optical sensors at the back of any mobile phone or MP3 player device, you can make it work like a computer mouse. This whole research has been named as Minput method which is a new input method that allows the user to browse through galleries, zoom in or out. It simply works in the same manner as the conventional computer mouse works. Chirs Harrison who is Ph.D student at Carnegie Mellon University is the brain behind this new invention. He has developed an ingenious way of installing the small optical sensors, which are not particularly expensive; you can easily treat your smart mobile phone or MP3 player as another form of Smartphone.
The Minput method not only works in Right, Left, Upward and downwards direction but also enables the user to do flicking and twisting which is yet another outstanding feature of this new technique. Although Chirs Harrison was not alone doing this research, his professor Scott Hudson was supervising and helping him in this new invention. So when flicking the device, you can also zoom in and out while you are viewing your pictures in your cell phone or even MP3 player. Harrison has recently presented a paper on the Minput device, which explains its working and how the world is going to benefit from this new invention. The best part of this research is its effectiveness which enables you to implement the Minput method; as you do not need any new sensor technology for this. Harrison explained that optical sensors were already being used in a much fantastic way, but our motive was to develop such an invention, which is cost effective and easily available, so he developed the Minput method by using the same optical sensors in a different and smart way. National Science Foundation supported this Minput method in parts for further grants also.
The paper from Harrison and Hudson has been published and is available for download also. The technology has become so popular in a short span of time that people are now experimenting this method in their own way. The main idea behind this Minput method is yet simple but innovative which can simply be done by planting two optical tracking sensors on mobile device or MP3 player. This allows both of the devices to manipulate for input and also enables some extremely appealing interaction which is cost effective. Furthermore, this also opens horizon to develop a small matchbox sized media player with all screen on its front side. Since the Minput method enable devices to operate just like another computer mouse, it can be used on any surface like a table or even in your own palm. Harrison has also uploaded the research paper on the Internet along with pictures and videos that can be watched on YouTube