Lasers are a common trope in Science Fiction, featured in everything from laser guns to laser screwdrivers. They are especially common in weapons, namely automatic sentry turrets and “smart” or targeted weapons. These include laser-sighted rifles, laser following missiles, etc. but in almost all cases, the laser is used as an indicator or control for some other process or device – the laser is an interface.
This project attempts to explore some possible solutions for laser-based interfaces, while also taking the concept of “hands free” direction indication a step further: instead of pointing with your hand or head, you can indicate a vector in space in a natural, intuitive, fast, and precise way by using a part of your body that is often already in perfect alignment with the subject of your attention: your eyes.
There are several advantages to eye-based control. When we think of “dexterity” we usually associate nimbleness, precision, and speed with the hands. However, we have other organs, the eyes, which are perhaps even faster and more precise, but are as-yet largely unused for interaction or control. Such an interaction method is, of course, also hands-free, another compelling property, and eye-tracking technology is becoming easy and inexpensive, with hobby-level systems exhibiting performance suitable for most tasks. Finally, when an eye-tracker is hooked up to a laser pointer, there is the undeniable cool-factor of creating a system that essentially allows the user to shoot lasers from (near) their eyes.