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Eye control system lets you play 'Pong' and write email, costs just $60 to build

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A new eye control system is being developed that uses less than $50 worth of off-the-shelf components.

Eye Pong
Eye Pong

A team of researchers at the Imperial College London have developed a new technique to let users control a computer with their eyes. While eye control isn't a new concept — we even managed to play some Fruit Ninja with our eyes back at Computex — this latest development is notable in particular because of its low cost. The team claims that the system was built using less than £40 (about US$62) worth of off-the-shelf parts, and it's designed to help those suffering from ailments like Multiple Sclerosis or muscular dystrophy interact with a computer.

Not only did test subjects manage to play a bit of Pong with their eyes, they were also able to browse the web and write emails. Two cameras track the users' eye movement and to replace a mouseclick all you need to do is wink. "This is frugal innovation; developing smarter software and piggy-backing existing hardware to create devices that can help people worldwide independent of their healthcare circumstances," says Dr Aldo Faisal. The device can even track your gaze in 3D, making it a potential tool for controlling electric wheelchairs or robotic prosthetics in the future.