A method has been developed to combine the interactivity of a tablet and a normal piece of paper.
Fujitsu has built a prototype machine which can automatically 'augment' a magazine page or document with additional overlays of information, including pictures, links and video.
The concept aims to combine paper and touch-screens, and create a truly 'interactive' real world interface.
In the demo a user can drag a box around a picture, which is then copied to the camera. Or you can see information overlayed on a map - which moves as the paper is dragged around a table - or touch links to browse the web.
You can also drag text and digitise it with a single touch.
But to do all of that, the invention itself uses simple components - just a normal camera and projector - alongside some clever software and 3D imagine.
The company said:
"We think paper and many other objects could be manipulated by touching them, as with a touchscreen. This system doesn't use any special hardware; it consists of just a device like an ordinary webcam, plus a commercial projector. Its capabilities are achieved by image processing technology."
According to Diginfo, the system could be in place in the real world by next year.
"We aim to develop a commercial version of this system by fiscal 2014. It's still at the demonstration level, so it's not been used in actual settings. Next, we'd like to get people to use it for actual tasks, see what issues arise, and evaluate usability. We want to reflect such feedback in this system."Suggest a correction