Nokia built a multi-touch ice-wall, just don’t use your tongue

Nokia built a multi-touch ice-wall, just don’t use your tongue

Leave it to the Finns. Just when you thought there wasn’t anything else you could do with ice, here comes a use right out of Harry Potter: a multi-touch ice screen.

Mobile giant Nokia decided that – since Finland has a tradition of ice sculpuring anyway – why not make an interactive touch ice wall. Really, why not?

So. Much. Tech.

Some of the biggest names in tech are coming to TNW Conference in Amsterdam this May.

Built out of a slab of 25cm ice weighing a ton, and then cut into 50cm to build the 2 meter by 1.5 meter wall. Nokia then polished the surface with a heat gun to give it a smooth surface. The wall uses rear-diffused illumination (the same tech used by the Microsoft Surface) which is basically a smart projection, instead of embedding sensors. According to New Scientist which first reported the ice wall:

A near-infrared light source mounted behind the “screen” bathes it in invisible light, and an array of near-infrared cameras, also behind the wall, are focused on the front surface. A hand placed on the ice reflects the light towards the camera array and the signal each camera receives helps a nearby PC establish the hand’s position, size and motion. The PC is also connected to a projector, which uses the data to project imagery – such as flames – beneath the user’s hand.

Of course, one of Nokia’s first suggestions for using this new tech is for the famous Ice Hotel in Sweden – now that would be something.

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