Google has a technology that I think is going to be really important. Called Project Tango, it is a set of hardware and software that gives computer vision the ability to map it’s surroundings. This means not only does it know what things look like but it also can tell how far away things are and what shape they are. Right now they are going to be using this in smartphones and tablets but the possibilities are fairly unlimited. What is really interesting about this is the system is apparently low cost and low power so it can work in mobile technology.
Looks like they are going to be producing 4000 tablets based on this tech and give them out at their upcoming developers conference.
The reports suggests that the tablets will have a 7-inch screen, infrared depth sensors, two back-mounted cameras, and “advanced software that can capture precise three-dimensional images of objects.” The Journal claims that Google is rushing to manufacture them in time for its annual I/O developer conference, which is scheduled for the end of June.
There has already been a use of this device in drones.
What is interesting about that is the drone is keeping it’s position based entirely on what it can see. Most systems like this rely on an external sensor system to help it navigate. Using internal technology is necessary in order for drones to be able to navigate in environments they can’t access external sensors.
This is an example of the sorts of technologies we should be teaching in schools.