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Microsoft's Windows 10 to have eye control

Microsoft's Windows 10 will be able to be controlled using just the eye.

The software has been developed to be used alongside a compatible eye tracker, such as the Tobii 4C, so it can be utilised by those with disabilities who depend on just using their eye muscles to communicate.

Microsoft wrote in their blog post: "Eye Control makes Windows 10 more accessible by empowering people with disabilities to operate an onscreen mouse, keyboard, and text-to-speech experience using only their eyes. The experience requires a compatible eye tracker, like the Tobii 4C, which unlocks access to the Windows operating system to be able to do the tasks one could previously accomplish with a physical mouse and keyboard.

"The source of the motivation is simple. It's our opportunity to embody the mission of the company, to 'empower every person and organization to achieve more' combined with the power of One Week. Now in its fourth year, One Week brings together thousands of Microsoft employees from across the globe to generate new ideas that push the boundaries of technology and solve real-world challenges. During this year's hackathon, we asked our employees, 'Who will you empower?' That mentality, combined with a passionate belief in the transformational power of technology, is a magic combination."

The idea came about back in 2014 when NFL player Steve Gleason pitched the idea to Microsoft. As part of the company's first hackathon three years ago, one team decided to take on Steve's challenge.

Jon Campbell, a Senior Research Software Development Engineer and a member of the original Ability Eye Gaze hackathon team, said: "There was this great vibe at One Week, it was like summer camp for innovative ideas rather than work. It was exciting to be challenged to follow our passions and think creatively with so many talented people from across the company.

"While not all ideas are winners, the thing that makes the hackathon great is that other ideas we kicked around had real potential - like eye tracking technology to help people with ALS and how Windows can bring it to more people."

Whilst Jake Cohen, Program Manager on the Windows Interaction Platform team, added: "When I heard about the Ability Eye Gaze team and what they were creating, it was super exciting to think about the possibilities of what could be done next.

"And it really made a dramatic difference to me when we started meeting with people living with ALS. I began to understand all the challenges they live with every single day. We've done a lot of great work across our teams, and we have a lot more to do, but we're at a point where it has the potential to really start changing lives."

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