Solid-state controls eliminate the need for buttons and dials in cars

Floors that can prevent theft and button-less cars are coming

By David Worthington | February 6, 2013, 4:33 PM PST

A New York start-up has made its possible for nearly any surface to become a multi-touch input like a smartphone, including floors and automotive dashboards. Smart floors would identify someone by his or her gait, and could even flag suspicious behavior in stores. A car could have a minimalistic interior without buttons or dials. A wall could become a home control.

Tactonic demonstrated its technology at the New York Tech Meetup last night. It has invented pressure sensors that create a touch screen type capability on a variety of things – even flexible substrates like OLEDs or thermoformed objects. Software creates many possibilities, some of which were discussed during the Meetup. Other use cases are still surfacing (pun intended).

Tactonic’s use of pressure sensors eliminates the need for fingers or styluses, explained CEO Gerry Seidman. That would allow a “smart skin” to be built into a floor or transform plastic automotive panels (or displays) into solid-state controls. Surfaces could even be back-lit or durable.

Read more: Floors that can prevent theft and button-less cars are coming | SmartPlanet.

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