It’s been just over a year since we learned about a company called Celluon and their nifty laser-keyboard product. But at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show we finally got a chance to try the technology for ourselves. Does it work? Yes – it does. In fact, depending on the surface onto which your project the keyboard, the experience can feel exactly the same as using the soft keyboard on most touch screen devices. The big advantage of course is that you don’t have to give up screen real-estate on your phone or tablet, and you don’t have to lug around a bulky bluetooth keyboard – just Celluon’s Magic Cube.
It’s easy at first to assume that the Beamz Player is just another fancy controller for a Guitar Hero type video game, but it’s actually a genuine instrument that uses laser light instead of strings. Breaking the laser contacts in time with the background track lets you “play” up to four different instruments.
According to this report from Cellular News, the researchers at Bell Labs, a division of Alcatel-Lucent, have achieved a signifcant milestone in networking: they’ve improved on the current fastest commerical speeds by a factor of ten.
How did they do it? They combined a variety of different technologies into a single solution that included 155 separate lasers, each of which carried 100 Gigabytes of data at different frequencies.
Now keep in mind, the researchers sent the light from these lasers down a single fibre optic cable, which means that they needed a way to decipher the data at the other end – something which traditional sensors aren’t able to do.
They used a new technology known as “coherent detection” – which can distinguish between a much greater number of light frequencies than “direct detection” (the current standard for commerical fibre optic transmissions).
So there’s really only one question left to ask: When can I get this hooked up at home?