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Leap Motion's latest update can see your joints, creep you out

The Leap Motion sprung out onto the motion-tracking scene promising to change the way humans interact with out technology. While it let us control our computer by wiggling our fingers, the USB stick-sized peripheral had its problems, including losing track of our mitts.

Now, Leap is launching a free beta update that allows its gesture-control device to better track user's hands.

Leap promises the changes are so significant that controllers will be able to track and label a user's individual bones and joints.

The software update also improves the device's performance in bright sunlight and guards against infrared interference, changes that should make its motion tracking more reliable.

Soft hands

Engadget got to float its hands over a device with the updated software and it seems Leap Motion is tracking even the most basic gestures. A V2 unit packing the update was able to track all five of the user's fingers no matter how they oriented their hands.

Along with the better sensing capabilities, Leap says developers can now implement grab and pinch commands. We imagine these would be great for a virtual game of chess and moving files around "by hand."

The improved tracking and added commands should be welcome additions for Leap Motion users who already own the USB device or HP computers equipped with the technology.

Even more importantly, the overall improved translation of real-life movements to virtual actions should even out the learning curve and make it more appealing to curious onlookers. With this update, the technology is getting closer to a more natural experience that should translate to greater comfort and more users.

The V2 Tracking is available now for free and will work with all existing Leap Motion devices.

Kevin Lee

Kevin Lee is the Hardware and Roundups Editor at IGN Entertainment. Prior to IGN Entertainment, he worked at TechRadar.