A new Kickstarter project called the Ego! Smartmouse blends together some recent trends in computing, including hardware identity authentication and 3D motion control to come up with a unique input device that wears many hats. The Ego! is a mouse in the traditional sense, allowing you to control your desktop or laptop computer, and it also has on-board file storage, can work as an authentication device for various services, and features built-in acceleration and motion detection to work like a Wiimote for controlling games.
The Smartmouse packs its own Linux-based OS into its compact design, with a 400 MHz ARM9 processor and up to 8GB of onboard flash storage. It connects via Bluetooth, has a gyroscope, compass and optical mouse sensor in addition to its accelerometer, and also includes a built-in VGA camera, touch-sensitive surface, vibration motor and notification LEDs. It charges via micro USB, and the project creators say it’ll get a decent amount of battery life thanks to the use of low-power tech.
Created by UK-based design firm Laura Sapiens, the Ego! Smartmouse is the product of a team with strong engineering and interaction design backgrounds. CEO Matteo Modè comes from an industrial and automotive engineering background, and the founding team also includes expertise in embedded security, consumer electronics, computer vision and embedded systems.
As you can see in the demo, the Ego! looks to be equally at home on the desktop, controlling media center PCs from the couch, or working with gaming applications to provide 3D controls. It can also automate routine tasks like opening a browser and logging into an email account, and be used as a presentation tool in combination with a projector. The on-board camera makes syncing the Ego! as easy as pointing the mouse at a QR code displayed on-screen (eliminating messy discovery and pairing procedures), and in an office setting it can be used to quickly and easily transfer files between workstations.
The team is looking for £20,000 in funding, with early pre-orders starting at just £70 for a 2GB black or white version of the Ego!, including international shipping. Higher storage is available for £110 (4GB) and £120 (8GB), both of which also offer up new color options as well.