Google once again played a prank on millions who follow the cult of Google. On April 1, whoever signed up on to their Gmail account saw the invitation to experiment with 'Google Motion’ which was purported to be an option whereby one could control Gmail with his or her body.
Sounded excellent, but not too outlandish either, going by the technological feats achieved by Google and its ilk. Google said this was "the new way to communicate" and exhorted people to shake off outdated technology. "The mouse and keyboard were invented before the Internet even existed. Since then, countless technological advancements have allowed for much more efficient human computer interaction."
This was how Google explained the Gmail Motion will work: "Gmail Motion uses your computer's built-in webcam and Google's patented spatial tracking technology to detect your movements and translate them into meaningful characters and commands. Movements are designed to be simple and intuitive for people of all skill levels."
"Using Gmail Motion is not only safe but also healthy and fun. As with any physical activity, certain precautions are recommended. First, make sure to clear the area around you. Second, try to take short breaks every 30-40 minutes, just as you would if you were typing. And finally, take time to stretch after each session to give the muscles you'll be using some relief."
Those who went ahead and tried to see what it was, were led through a comic-looking video that explained how body movements could sync with Google's patented spatial tracking technology.
And then, finally, the teaser.
Google said the Gmail Motion doesn't actually exist. "At least not yet..." it said. If not yet, will it not ever be?
The question is whether the prank, in time, will turn the heat on its inventors, demanding reincarnation in true form. Like, as they say, a character setting out in search of his creator. Think about Google wizards being tormented in sleep by ghoulish Gmail Motion stillborns!
If Microsoft's Kinect for Xbox 360 can do something ideationally very much similar, why can't Google?
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