All this stuff has been around for a while, but MS is taking the bold step to commercialize it. The new product is called Microsoft Surface. Pretty slick:
The videos on the MS Surface homepage are also worth watching, though do have an overzealously awesome attitude.
Note though that none of this is new technology — it’s just that a mainstream software company has decided to convert established ideas into a mainstream product. Here’s a set of videos of other surface computing projects:
The BumpTop Project at UToronto does file management using a surface.
TouchLight by MSR
Frustrated Total Internal Reflection — the technology that powers most of these interfaces
Reactable from Universitat Pompeu Fabra. MS totally stole their “shapes” idea.
And last, but definitely not least, is my entry to this game :)
Last winter I took a class with Prof. Michael Rodemer called “Interactivity and Behaviour”. I tried to build a tabletop that reacts to where you touch it, changing lights and modifying the music that it plays. The video is a little lame, but it was fun to build the damn thing!