Since Microsoft releases Kinect with their XBox 360 gaming console a few years back, we see more and more motion sensing devices coming to the market. In a nutshell, a motion sensing device tries to “sense your motion".

Full body sensing devices like the Kinect can tell how many “human shapes" are in front of the camera as well as the positions of the major limbs for each person.

Potential applications for special needs

  • Motion sensing games for learning – so kids can learn and do exercise at that same time
  • Rehabilitation games – make exercising more fun
  • Gross motor training
  • Simulation games


Devices like Leapmotion is designed to track hand and finger movements. There are now laptops and keyboards with the Leapmotion built in.

Potential applications for special needs

  • Fine motor training – e.g. the grasping motion
  • As a controller – imagine controlling a wheelchair using just one finger


There are trackers that track the movement of your eyes. Companies like Tobii have been producing eyetrackers for a long time. Eyetrackers used to be very very expensive. But now, you can buy a fairly decent one for under US$150. Developers can now develop all kinds of eyetracking apps using these more affordable devices.

Potential applications for special needs

  • As an input device – e.g. people who are paralyzed can communicate with others using an eyetracker and Gazespeaker which is an open source AAC software
  • As a controller to control the PC
  • As an assessment tool – e.g. researchers may be interested to know how a dyslexic kid “read" a passage