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Aric

This is a big deal. But we don't need to wait that long or spend that much for one:
http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/johnny_lee_demos_wii_remote_hacks.html

Direct brain-computer interactions will be much more revolutionary. One might think it will be the next killer ap 5-8 years after this one, but it may be coming a lot sooner. http://emotiv.com/INDS_2/inds_2_1.html

Chris S.

Windows 7 will be the first major OS to feature touch. They have tablets that are capable of it, already. It's not mainstream yet.

Aric, I don't think there will be-all-end-all input device - whether it is touch, brain-computer interaction or voice. Unless it is multifunctional and can do everything from move a mouse, play the latest FPS and be able to read your thoughts coherently for writing documents, it's going to be a very minor but important technology.

I hope they will be able to do that within the next 5 to 8 years and I look forward to it.

Paul Moore

I have been using a Wacom tablet for Photoshop for a few years now. It's a huge improvement over drawing with a mouse. (A process I compared to using an etch-a-sketch) I'm thinking we aren't too far from direct wiring into our nervous system. Speak its name and it appears.
Anyone want to buy a slightly used CD/ DVD collection?

jeffolie

I am positive towards this development. Almost everything I do with a computer will change. However, I doubt I will be more productive.

GK

jeffolie,

You will become more productive on many existing tasks. But you will also find new forms of entertainment that will distract you and waste the surplus time (just like the Internet did for people).

TIck Tock

How can an UI be a killer app? Doesn't any new UI need a killer app (ie. you have it precisely the wrong way around). Anyway, touch has a bright future in many niches, but a very dim one in general computing. The arm is heavy. You don't want to be moving it around a lot. The MS Surface / Jeff Han stuff makes for neat demos, but it is destined to fail, if to fail means to "not be used for the vast vast vast majority of ordinary computing tasks". Most of what "surface" computing can do in the consumer sphere, like your restaurant example, can be achieved relatively cheaply through mobile phone technology, ironically enough where touch will be a genuinely important evolution.

Alucard

There are already restaurants with touch screens and mouse screens for cheaper tables that offer computer assisted waiting.

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