Moon travel, Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, 1984, 2001: A Space Odyssey.  The list of events and mass media products that look to the future and spark our imaginations is impressive.  At the time of their release we almost scoffed at their views of the future.  We don’t do this quite so much anymore.  Here are 5 products that are here today direct from the future.

1.     Gaze Interaction: The ability to control your computer with your eyes.  Tobii’s Gaze Interaction allows users to navigate, scroll, zoom and select with their eyes.  The not-so-hard to imagine applications are the ability to open a program by looking at its icon, maybe the ability to move files to folders and maybe conduct some right click functions.  Our question is what happens if you’re an eye-roller?

2.    Gesture Control: Most of you are familiar with Microsoft’s Kinect which started on a games system and is moving to PC’s.  Startup XTR3D has developed a product that will travel across platforms.  It can work with any 2D camera, including a webcam and can operate from 17 feet away.

3.    Advanced Touchscreen Control: The product is the “Ringbow.”  It’s a finger worn tool that adds additional functions to typical touchscreen computing.  It can be used to click or right-click, open non-visible elements and it can also be programmed to copy actions of traditional input keys.Ringbow

4.    The Mouse Glove: Our name, not anyone else’s.  It’s a glove that acts as the mouse.  Keyglove from Kickstarter will be out later in 2012.  It’s a wireless, open source input device with great flexibility for various programs.  In addition to its applications in traditional computing, the Keyglove could be of great service to those with physical impairments.The Key Glove

5.    Speech Control: This technology is already in operation in the form of iPhone’s Siri and Microsoft’s Kinect.  Look for it to grow exponentially in the next few years as devices’ abilities to detect dialects and semantics improve.

The future is at hand, and in the case of the Mouse Glove, literally.