Multi-touch terrestrial sphere (Globe/Globus/Глобус) is an unusual and highly innovative spherical information system which sets new standards for graphical user interfaces. It is a high-resolution rear-projection device with a multi-touch surface. The lens is a spherical sector measuring 100 cm with a centre height of 30 cm, which means a spherical sector of 114 cm in diameter. A diagram of the display and a picture of an already installed lens are shown on the right.
The main application Multitouch Earth fit to on large Multitouch Domed Monitor.
Hardware and Hardware Drivers
The large multi-touch display hardware was custom-made for the terrestrial sphere (Globe/Globus/Глобус) and its installation has a specific set of restrictions that must be observed (installation depth, exposure to light etc). Due to its spherical shape, the display requires a low-level driver and appropriate de-skewing and stitching algorithms to be used for presentation.
The terrestrial sphere (Globe/Globus/Глобус) requires device to be integrated with an established software platform able to fully support Multi-Touch in order to provide applications with a suitable abstraction level for interpretation of the user gestures. The drivers described above are to be compatible with this software platform. Windows 7 is one such suitable platform, as it provides acceptable APIs and has Multi-Touch capabilities, as well as control elements adapted especially for writing unique multi-touch-enabled applications. In addition, established standard applications should be able to run on these platforms or be suitable for adaptation by the manufacturer. However, these system capabilities cannot be accessed easily as operation using non-certified hardware is not supported.