Leap motion controller for mac

The on-screen pointer was also accurate when navigating the toolbar and browsing the menu, which requires the user to poke toward the screen as if physically pressing a button to make selections. However, controls and gestures vary between apps; other games or programs require you to hold your hand or finger over a button for a certain period of time to select it, similar to Microsoft's Kinect. The Leap Motion Controller remained responsive when holding our hand as close as one inch above the controller or up to the maximum height of two feet.

With the device and accompanying notebook placed at waist height, we still controlled an airplane while playing "Solar Warfare" as we stood up from our chair. Click to Enlarge The success of a device like the Leap Motion is largely contingent on how well its apps work. During our testing, most of the apps we downloaded launched without a hitch and performed well. Apps are located in the Airspace Home interface, which you launch by selecting the icon on your desktop.

This home screen includes a link to the app store and displays all of the apps you've installed.

As Leap Motion notes, the controller doesn't come with any preset gestures, giving developers the freedom to get creative and incorporate any controls they please. While this proves advantageous in some respects, it also means each app comes with its own learning curve. Upon opening apps and games, you'll be greeted with a set of instructions and gestures that are required to interact with a given app. We found these opening tutorials to be helpful and intuitive, but it was sometimes difficult to remember the instructions when revisiting various apps.


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Overall, we were impressed with the gesture recognition within apps. For example, tilting your hand from left to right to simulate the wings of a plane when playing "Solar Warfare" controls the direction of the plane. Making a fist when exploring Google Earth stops the cursor from moving so you can remain stationary. While the Airspace store's apps proved to be intuitive and engaging, we noticed that most apps don't include a convenient way to exit the application.

Click to Enlarge The Leap Motion Controller won't automatically enable you to navigate your Windows desktop using gestures, but a free app in the Airspace store does the trick. Downloading and installing "Touchless for Windows" allows you to scroll, click, open apps and surf the Web within the Windows interface. Available for Windows 7 and higher, the app essentially creates an invisible touch screen in front of your computer's display.

We installed "Touchless for Windows" on a Windows 8 notebook and breezed through the Modern interface with ease. After launching the app, you'll have to enable it in the System Tray for it to work. A tutorial will show up initially, but once it's completed you'll have to right click the icon that looks like three bubbles in your System Tray and hover over the Interaction option to enable gesture controls in Windows 8. The app works by setting up what is referred to as a "hover zone" and a "touch zone" in front of your display.

The hover zone is located slightly farther back from the screen, and moving your hand while in this area lets you move your cursor around and scroll. To make selections or click on apps or links, we simply extended our hand forward toward the screen to enter the touch zone. We found that using one finger to move the cursor was much more accurate than waving our entire hand. It's also best to use fine gestures rather than large exaggerated motions when moving around the desktop or navigating the Web, which makes it easier to maintain full control of the cursor.

Generally, we were pleased with the Leap Motion Controller's responsiveness and accuracy when navigating the Windows 8 interface. However, the device performs more precisely when it comes to scrolling and launching apps than it does when pressing small buttons. We had a difficult time getting the cursor to stay on the X button in the corner of our Chrome window when trying to exit the browser. Click to Enlarge Motion controls aren't new to the gaming industry, so it's no surprise that gaming would be an integral part of the Leap Motion's functionality.

The Airspace store offers a selection of gaming apps that range from aviator shooters such as "Solar Warfare" to experimental games like "Lotus" and casual titles such as "Boom Ball. We especially enjoyed playing "Fruit Ninja" using the Leap Motion's smooth gesture controls to slash fruit in mid-air. This means that the interaction zone extends out above my keyboard and I can easily lift my hand and gesture.

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If you are using a MacBook you can also place it in front of the keyboard. When using the Leap Motion Controller, I find that my hands are detected best when they are at least 20 centimetres, or eight inches, above the device and within 45 centimetres, or 18 inches, in every other direction. If you are using an app that calls for gestures with two or three fingers, the wider you spread your hands the better; if you do not spread them enough, the Leap Motion Controller will only detect one finger.

Using the Leap Motion Controller takes a bit of getting use to. It is a new way to interact with your Mac. Initially, you might struggle to use it, however, with practice it has become second nature to me. Setting up the Leap Motion Controller is simple. Connect the device to the Mac using one of the USB cables. Visit the Leap Motion set up page and download the latest Leap Motion software.

The installer will take you through the process. The Leap Motion Controller comes with two apps: a menu bar app that is responsible for controlling the device and the Airspace Home app which is a hub for all the apps that it supports. After you have created your account, you will be taken to the Orientation app.

That's not you, right?

This introduces you to the Leap Motion Controller. The Orientation app uses a great visualiser to show a representation of what the Leap Motion Controller is detecting. Tip: If you want to access the visualiser without going through the orientation instructions, click on the menubar icon and select Visualiser….

Downloading them from here will add them to the Airspace Home app.

Tiny Device, Huge Possibilities

At present there are free and paid apps—the iOS App Store it is not! There are three main kinds of apps that use the Leap Motion Controller. The first are apps that let you control your Mac directly with the device. The second are concept apps that let you do things like sculpt, play musical instruments or explore Google Earth using it. The final type of apps are games. To install an app from the Airspace Store, visit its page in the store and click on the Free or Buy button depending on the app.

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Leap Motion Controller

If it is a free app, the Airspace Home app will open and start downloading it. If it is a paid app you will need to enter your password to confirm the purchase and, if it is your first time buying an app, add a credit card to your account. The quality of the apps in the Airspace Store is mixed. The apps range from incredibly cool tech demos that you will be bored of within five minutes to simple and addictive games you will keep going back to with everything in between. As there are so few apps to choose from it is easy to quickly browse the store and download a few that take your fancy.

To give you somewhere to start here are two of the apps I enjoyed playing around with. Instead of using a bad plastic lightgun to shoot the targets you use your finger.

Leap Motion Controller for Mac or PC - MVCode Clubs

To aim point your finger at the screen. Advanced Search. Search by Keyword. Command your computer with gestures. Complete control of your games and computer. Explore, dissect and assemble a human skull! Explore, Dissect and Assemble! Natural sculpting. Instant access to common computer controls.

Touchless control for your Mac. Reach out and experience what your Leap Motion Controller can do! Unleashing the power of 3D Internet. A mesmerizing 3D underwater experience. Explore a peaceful, moonlit river to see what surprises it holds. How far can you fly with your hands? A world full of smashing action. Take on the world from the cockpit of your own space shuttle! Smash your opponent to the smooth sounds of classic jazz! Make music with your hands. Your presentation at your fingertips!


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Leave Tetris in the two-dimensional dust.