iBird Avian Flight Simulator Makes You Feel Like Icarus

The iBird Flight Simulator was easily the most creative demo at Microsoft's Research Summit yesterday. Also developed in conjunction with NYU (like the UnMouse Pad), it uses a USB controller with dual retractable, pulley-style cords, the iBird tracks your movement in 3D space.. The iBird then relays that information back to the computer and offers visual feedback in the form of a projected 3D world where you become a bird that flaps, leans and speeds up.

The coolest part though, are the connected fans, which speed up and slow down in relation to how fast you're flying. You definitely get a sense of wind resistance with this rudimentary setup, so I'd be curious to see what they could do with more resources. Ilia Rosenberg, one of the main NYU students behind the project, said they tried using Wiimotes, but it didn't offer the same sense of feedback that the USB controller did. [Microsoft Research]

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