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Pinwheel Interface Wants You to Blow It

by Paul Strauss

I’ve seen some unusual user interfaces and input devices over the years, but one that I’ve never thought of before now is a pinwheel. Sure, there are games on the Nintendo handhelds which require that you blow on its microphone to create virtual wind, but this is definitely much a more tangible interface.


This pinwheel-based interface was designed by Adi Marom and the LAB at Rockwell Group as a mechanism for users to control videos of convertible Ultrabooks in Intel’s booth at CES 2013. A user simply blows onto the pinwheel, and it moves the frames in the video accordingly. The harder you blow, the faster the video advances. Here, check it out:

Pretty neat, eh? Sure, I can’t think of too many applications for a pinwheel interface, but it’s still kind of fun to watch.

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