Microsoft Research and Development has completed the 5 minute exercise (per discussion groups on this topic) of reprogramming a Dance Dance Revolution mat such that someone working at a desk could use their feet in conjunction with other input tools to get work done more efficiently.

Now in its DDR design, its probably not going to make it out of the lab, but the idea was that us cubicle types might be able to get our legs moving to the productivity beat. Individuals with disabilities might find some benefits to this alternate input method as well. Not to mention having an alternative to the mouse and keyboard could reduce carpal tunnel issues.

Personally, I drink to many caffienated beverages, so my knees/feet are always bouncing while I type. It would be difficult for me to harness this energy into something useful on the screen. I would be mousing along and my left foot would start jogging and there goes the cursor across the screen . .. ………………………….. ………… .

Interested advocates point out that pianos and guitar pedals and vehicles all train our feet to do something useful, while our brains and hands are engaged in a task, so maybe my feet could pay attention long enough to finish one more presentation, email or mind map.

Nay sayers point out that this seems a lot like a more famous invention, which was the jump to conclusions mat from Office Space – Special Edition with Flair (Full Screen Edition).

Microsoft goes DDR with “Step User Interface” – Engadget

Technorati Tags: Dance Dance Revolution

Written by: Brett Bumeter, President