Search Engine Optimization and Marketing for E-commerce

April Fools! Google unveils Gmail Motion

by Andrew Kagan 1. April 2011 09:23

Google announced today Gmail Motion: a new innovation in email technology, designed to use motion-capture technology to speed the composition and manipulation of emails. Using easy to learn, simple and intuitive gestures, Gmail Motion improves productivity and has the additional benefit of increased physical activity, as you jump out of your task chair and start gesticulating wildly at the screen.


Okay, not really…the April Fool’s Day jest was launched on the Google homepage, with a link to an official looking presentation of a new technology. The whimsical take on using motion-capture technology to control opening, sending and editing emails may be a subtle kick at Microsoft’s Kinect motion-capture gaming system, which is flying off the shelves and likely leading a revolution in interactive and immersive gaming.

Google has often been criticized for being a late adopter of user-interface improvements in search products, and this side-wise look at improved human-computer interaction may be pointing to real software innovations just around the corner. More likely than not, this will be in the realm of voice-recognition and voice-to-text, which is already firmly embedded in Google’s Android OS for mobile devices (coming to a PC near you!).

In the past, Google’s easter eggs have usually looked backward, such as the “Plumbing Net” take on sending messages through the sewer system. It’s always a risk to make fun of UI innovations that seem novel at first but spawn practical uses we don’t imagine at the time. Clearly, gesture and facial recognition is an evolving technology that could potentially revolutionize UI interaction…let’s hope Google stays at the forefront of this innovation.



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