Syncing your mobile device with your computer by clicking some buttons on an app is so yesterday – at least according to Tsung-Hsiang Chang, a graduate student at MIT’s Computer Science and Artficial Intelligence Laboratory; and Yang Li, a Google employee. The two of them managed to develop a system that allows users to sync their devices just by using the phone’s camera.Imagine looking up the directions to a place on Google Maps using your computer. How would you transfer the map from your computer to your phone after you’ve found the location? Well you could always look it up again on your phone (since you know where it is now) or you could save it to “My Maps” and then load it up on your phone. Deep Shot makes the process even much simpler. All you have to do is take a photograph of the map on your screen with your phone. Google Maps will then load up on your phone, showing you the very same location that you were checking out on your desktop. You can then interact directly with the map on your phone like you would be able to if you searched for it manually or loaded it from “My Maps”.
Magic? Not really. Deep Shot relies on the camera capturing the URL of Google Maps on the desktop’s screen in order to bring up Google Maps on your phone with the same exact location loaded and ready to go. While this may work with Google Maps because of the way it uses its URL to mark its current saved state, not every web app or service is as “URL-friendly” as Google Maps is.
Using the same technology, users can also transfer what’s on their phones onto their computers as well, just by taking a photograph of the desktop to identify the computer they would like to send their phone’s screens to. The computer will then load up the web page/app that’s in the same state as the phone.
CNET reports that Chang and Li developed the system last summer when Chang was an intern at Google, who now owns the rights to it. While this system is not yet available to the public, you can expect Google to include it some time in the future – probably after they develop more apps that can make use of the feature. Watch a video demonstration of Deep Shot at work: