Closer Look: Leap Motion Controller
It is not hard to describe the Leap Motion Controller because everything is in one package: the sensor. To give you a feeling for the size of the Leap Motion Controller it is about as long and thick as my middle finger, and as wide as my thumb. Of course the dimensions are given in the Features and Specification section, or see in the image below if you need a more accurate account. The point is that it is a very unobtrusive object to put on your desk.
As can be seen it sensor is has a brushed aluminum casing, with a shiny black piece of glass on top, one green LED to let you know it is on, and rubber on the bottom (which helps you figure out which way is up).
The next detail is that the Leap Motion Controller has a USB 3.0 connection, so those with USB 3.0 functionality can enjoy the maximum speed of response, and those with USB 2.0 can also use the unit.
So that is about it for the description of the Leap Motion Controller. It has simple classic lines, with nothing to reveal what is under the hood. It is not until the unit is installed and plugged in that the true magic comes alive.
Leap Motion Controller Detailed Features
The first thing I wanted to know was how in the heck this thing works. So I was faced with a choice. Either I take my brand new, just arrived, review Leap Motion Controller apart, or I see what I could find on the internet. Now I am not going to pretend that I would take it a-part, well maybe as a last resort, after the review, but luck was on my side. Included in the media package supplied by Leap Motion that was a question in the Leap Motion FAQ.pdf: “The Leap Motion Controller contains 2 camera sensors and 3 infrared LEDs. Leap Motion’s software is the real magic – (it) translates the information from the camera sensors into 3 D input. Leap Motion’s software is based on mathematical breakthrough s made by cofounder David Holz.“
I was also able to find a few websites that actually showed the disassembly of the sensor. The one that I found with the most detailed tear down was at SparkFun (be careful my browser did not like the “https//learn” extension). For me it saved the life of one Leap Motion Controller.
So once have your Leap Motion Controller, you need to visit the Leap Motion Setup site to download the software and activate the controller. At the same time you sign up for an Airspace Account because this is where you will download apps that use the controller. Now once you have installed the software and downloaded a couple of apps you are off to the races! There is a good tutorial on the use of the Leap Motion Controller, and most apps also have tutorials for the specific hand shapes and gestures used for the specific application.