Touch Surface made from Scratch

Some time ago we have agreed on a bachelor project with the Technical University of Winterthur (ZHAW) to work on a «Virtual Touch Screen» which is based on the concept of having two cameras taking images from the side of the surface to make it touch sensitive. By interpreting the positions of the finger within the two images and using triangulation, it is possible to figure out the x/y position of the finger on the surface.

Today the project of the two students who have been working on the implementation of the «Virtual Touch Screen» for a few weeks, was presented at the «Nacht der Technik». It was quite impressive to see, what can be achieved by combining two smart guys, two web cams, a standard screen and a few thousand lines of Java code.

How to create a Touch Screen yourself - Step 1

Although in this example a screen has been used as the surface, it could as well have
been a desk with a front or rear projection or even a few printed buttons on a table

How to create a Touch Screen yourself - Step 2

The laptop used was a rather old model which made clear that the CPU necessary
to make this setup work can be rather inexpensive and low power

How to create a Touch Screen yourself - Step 3

One of the two cameras used to grab the image. It would also be possible to add more cameras
to support larger areas like entire walls in a class room and also support multi touch recognition.

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