IN December, Johnny Chung Lee, then a Ph.D. candidate, posted a five-minute video on YouTube that became an Internet sensation.
The video showed how, in a few easy steps, the Nintendo Wii remote controller — or “Wiimote” — could transform a normal video screen into a virtual reality display, with graphics that seemed to pop through the screen and into the living room. So far, the video has been seen more than six million times.
Interactive whiteboards, which in commercial form generally sell for more than $1,000, make it possible to control a computer by tapping, writing or drawing on an image of the desktop that has been projected onto a screen. Mr. Lee’s version can be built with roughly $60 in parts and free open-source software downloadable from his Web site.
Some 700,000 people, many of them teachers, have downloaded the software, Mr. Lee says.
--Leslie Berlin, NYT, on one of MIT's Technology Review's top innovators under 35