Battelle Scientists Invent Software That Secures Computers With Wave Of Hands


If you spend a lot of time on your computer, you know that passwords are important to keep private information secure.  

But remembering those passwords can be a challenge for many.

So the experts at Battelle Memorial Institute have come up with a handy solution.

To sign on your work computers, you may need passwords, but some workers shake their heads at the thought.

"And then you have to change them, and it's a pain," says Paul Ballinger. "I can't keep track of them all.”

He has a sheet that contains 70 passwords for 70 different websites.

Many websites want a password, too.

"I have work passwords, and I have home passwords," says Gardy Sweetman.

That’s why many computer users write down their passwords or simply use the same one for every site, which is not a good idea, according to computer experts at Battelle Memorial Institute.

They say that makes computers too easy to break into.  

Nicholas Vidovich and Matt Wyckhouse came up with a better way.  

It's based on interactive technology developed by a California company.  A small plug-in piece examines and records your hand when you wave it over a computer.

"We can identify where your joints are, and that's unique to each person," says Wyckhouse.

Once the software has memorized your hand, the computer will unlock or lock for you alone.

"You walk away. You can lock your computer. You come back. You wave your hand over top and you're right back in, and no one else can do that because your hand is unique,” said Wyckhouse.

Wyckhouse says the software allows several members of a family to use the same computer but access only their own files.  

The app will be for sale next month.  

But that's just the first step.  

Later this year, they'll have an upgrade that will allow the computer to store passwords for all your websites, as well.

"And you can unlock that using your hand, and you won't have to remember all your passwords anymore,” said Wyckhouse.

The Leap Motion app will be for sale at Best Buy stores in about three weeks.

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