Video Motion Input Prototypes to be Shown at Canadian New Media Awards


The video motion cursor work of our Sheridan Interactive Multimedia grads will be shown at the Canadian New Media Awards in Toronto at the Carlu on May 28, 2007.

The video motion cursor class which turns video motion in a Web cam into cursor movement was written by professor Dan Zen in Flash AS2.0 It turns successive frames of the video into bitmaps and then uses the difference filter with the aid of blurring to reduce video noise, thresholding to one color and drawing a rectangle around that color to capture the area of motion. A cursor is then placed at the top middle of the rectangle when central motion is detected and at the top outer edges of the rectangle when peripheral motion is detected. This placement is adjusted proportionally to accommodate arm and hand motion and place the cursor at the finger.

The students have used the VideoMotion class to create a variety of pioneering prototypes in motion input multimedia. Examples are:

  • Running from a swarm of bees that follow you
  • Waving the hand to play notes on a music staff
  • Controlling a magic wand to spring effects out of a hat
  • Using your lips to activate a translation e-learning application
  • Jumping to knock coins into a box in a Mario game
  • Flying a butterfly through a magical land
  • Simulating fire and wind to fly hot air balloons

Special thanks to FITC and Grant Skinner for techniques probably around since our founder David Rokeby and who knows before that…

An introduction sample the video motion cursor class in action can be seen on this sample page. Please leave a comment on this post if you would like access to the Flash VideoMotion class.


Click for Sample Video Motion Demonstration sample by Dan Zen.

7 Responses to “Video Motion Input Prototypes to be Shown at Canadian New Media Awards”

  1. Ross Brannigan Says:

    Hi, I’d like access to the Flash Video Motion class, thanks

  2. danzen Says:

  3. Dan Zen Says:

    The classes have been updated to AS3. The classes for AS2 are still there as well.

  4. Interactive Multimedia Blog « Dan Zen Says:

    […] a music application by Kim Cullion that captures the users gesture motion with a $10 web cam. The Motion Cursor classes I made create a motion cursor which can be used to play notes on a musical […]

  5. cyberredfox Says:

    This doesnt seem to work on the Mac.

    Any thoughts?


  6. Dan Zen Says:

    Sorry – got half way through trying to solve the Mac issue – thought I had it but when I tested it still did not work. I think I can get it and will try again this week. I have not posted my attempts. Will post the working version hopefully.

  7. Dan Zen Says: has the answer to the Camera on the Mac – thanks Sunil! Tracked it down after a year – have not put the trick into the code but will at some point soon.

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