Study shows free-form drawing can do a better job than passwords in safeguarding phones

What if instead of typing down a four-digit number or a password, you just draw your favorite shape instead? A study by the Wireless Information Network Laboratory (WINLAB) at Rutger’s University puts free-form drawing recognition technology to the test and results show it could be a better way of logging in than the conventional numbers or letters passkey.

The test made use of Protractor, a single stroke gesture recognizer built by Google Research’s Yang Li. The algorithm uses the nearest neighbor approach, focusing on angles in the drawings as points of recognition. With Li’s novel approach, gesture recognition is up to six times faster and more efficient, an important factor should the technology be used with smartphone computing power.

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