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Portables Toys Hardware

Transform a Regular LCD Into a Touchscreen 146

Posted by kdawson
from the noli-me-tangere dept.
eZtaR writes "NAVisis is introducing a new USB gadget (for Windows only including Vista) called LaptopTablet. You mount it onto the side of your regular LCD monitor to transform it into a fully functional touchscreen, controlled with an included pen. The gadget is priced at around $100 and seems a good alternative for Photoshoppers."
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Transform a Regular LCD Into a Touchscreen

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  • Oy ... (Score:4, Funny)

    by packetmon (977047) on Monday May 07, 2007 @07:54AM (#19019115) Homepage
    Let me know when some high end printing company bundles this so I can go to work on Photoshopping my paycheck. (For educational purposes of course)
    • I'll sell you some high-end printing paper you can touch with included pen for $100!
  • TabletMouse (Score:5, Funny)

    by Nerdfest (867930) on Monday May 07, 2007 @07:59AM (#19019143)
    RThe TabletMouse looks interesting as well. The company should probably hire a better translator though. "Welcome to NAVIsis, The Best Company of Tablet Device"? Apparently, all your mice are belong to them.
    • Something sitting on the side of my monitor and watching my por^h^h^honline activities? No thanks.
  • by syntap (242090) on Monday May 07, 2007 @08:01AM (#19019159)
    ...but there has to be a pr0n application here somewhere.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Please don't tell us what you're going to use as a stylus. Please.
    • by pato101 (851725)
      Warning: do not trust Russian applications, they might put a finger on you...
    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Snarkhunter (1056150)
      It's called Doki Doki Majo Shinpan [kotaku.com]. You touch Japanese schoolgirls to see if they practice the dark arts. Nintendo said " it isn't pr0n," but after they said that they mouthed "it's totally pr0n." Enjoy.
  • Just a gadget (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Frostclaw (1006995)
    Unfortunatly, I don't think this will be much more than a neat gadget, and it certainly won't live up to the needs of a serious artist. There's no mention of accuracy or pressure sensitivity, and I didn't see art/photoshop listed on the website. I'd be keen on seeing some reviews of it, and the prospect of attaching it to a laptop screen sounds pretty interesting but for the price I'd rather just pick up a small Wacom tablet. The fact it's made mainly for a laptop monitor only and claims to work only for
    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      There's no mention of accuracy or pressure sensitivity, and I didn't see art/photoshop listed on the website.

      Says 400 DPI on the page linked to and go check the "Example" tab for art. It's good enough for anime.


      Really, Read The Fucking Article/Product Page/Whatever next time. Borderline trolling, what you posted.

      • Re:Just a gadget (Score:5, Informative)

        by Phat_Tony (661117) on Monday May 07, 2007 @09:46AM (#19020089)
        His "borderline troll" is undoubtedly accurate.

        Pressure sensitivity is key for most any artist, it's where the real value of the Wacom tablets lie, allowing you to control the quality of your brush strokes with pressure as you work. That's a bigger part of the tablet's advantage over the mouse than the actual "pen" method of input for many artists. This makes no mention of any kind of pressure sensitivity. Clearly, it can't make the screen pressure sensitive. Perhaps they could build a sensor into the pen that measures pressure and use the edge device for position, but that doesn't look like it's what they did, their pen looks like a "dumb" device, not a wireless pressure sensor. Even if it did have a pressure sensor in the tip, it's going to have to be so sensitive that it requires a really light touch, or else you're going to mar your screen, and that would greatly diminish its value.

        As far as resolution is concerned: they say "sampling" is at "about" 400 DPI (whatever that means), but then it says "recognized resolution 0.2mm" which is about 125 dpi. The Wacom tablets artists work with recognize a resolution of about 5,000 lines per inch.

        I'm sure you can draw a cartoony sketch with it just fine, but there's no way this device as it stands now is going to replace tablets for professional artists. That doesn't mean it's worthless. A lot of thing you want to do with touch sensitive displays isn't professional art. These could be a much cheaper alternative for touch-sensitive user interfaces and games and such. Maybe in future generations they will add some sort of pressure sensitivity through the pen and increase the resolution by an order of magnitude. Until then, the "borderline troll" is correct.
        • Not to mention that the Intuos3 series is capable of sensing pen rotation and x/y tilt. You need plugins and whatnot for some of these effects, and some features aren't present with the bundled stylus, but the feature-level on these tablets and accessories is absolutely astounding. Not to mention that each stylus, even among multiple of the same type, has its own unique ID, and can be associated with different tools. You can have an array of styluses, each with a different color, brush size/type, and opa

        • sounds like you think conventional graphics pads/tablet PCs have squidgy pressure sensitive screens? that isn't the case, the pressure sensitivity (up to 1024 increments) is always built into the spring-loaded stylus tip, and communicated wirelessly to the PC.
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Phat_Tony (661117)
            "sounds like you think conventional graphics pads/tablet PCs have squidgy pressure sensitive screens?"

            No, I did not think that. As other people have posted before [slashdot.org] in this discussion (at +5), "conventional graphics pads/tablet PCs" have screens that are tough and scratch resistant and are designed to be pushed on all day with the tip of a stylus. This would destroy conventional LCD's. So, as I said in my post:
            1. It doesn't appear that this device has any pressure sensitivity, and
            2. If they wanted to a
            • Fair enough, I misread.
            • Perhaps it would be good for converting desktop LCD's to touch-screen though. Of course, they'd have to offer a huge variety of sizes and shapes of screen protectors. Or perhaps expect people to cut-to-size with a paper cutter or something.

              Considering that a Wacom Cintiq is well over two grand (for a 21" LCD), for that particular market such effort would be worth it -- $300 + $100 + a little work is a Hell of a lot better than $2500!

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Frostclaw (1006995)
        I did in fact see the 400DPI. I'm more referring to "if I put my pen at point x on the monitor, does my cursor accuratly reflect that point onscreen".

        I'm curious to see how well it works, and I appologize if my comment came off as trollish.
      • >> It's good enough for anime. Like the OP said. No mention of art. ;)
    • by Kankraka (936176)
      Personally I'd rather -not- be putting pressure on my laptops LCD panel, it's not designed for things like that. The graphire III i have now does a more than suitable job at my on-the-go tablet needs.
    • The main utility of this to me and, even more so, to my wife is that we're PDA users and occasionally find ourselves trying to tap on a dialog box with a finger on the PC monitor. This would make that activity useful!

      (Now I need some utility to make my PC mouse pointer able to appear on my PDA screen when it's in the cradle on my desk, the same way it does with the laptop LCD and the 19" monitor next to it!)

    • [T]he prospect of attaching it to a laptop screen sounds pretty interesting but for the price I'd rather just pick up a small Wacom tablet.

      If you're going to do that, why not buy a Tablet PC? The price premium over a regular laptop is the same as the cost of a Wacom tablet, and you'll have the (IMHO, much better) experience of actually having your drawings appear under your pen instead of drawing in one place and having it show up somewhere else.

  • Ugggh ... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by LaughingCoder (914424) on Monday May 07, 2007 @08:03AM (#19019175)
    Who wants to hold their arm out, hovering over the keyboard, attempting to "draw" on a surface that isn't firm (laptop hinges are not designed to resist pushing on the screen)? This is a terrible idea in my opinion. The big advantage of *real* tablets is that they fold "roughly" flat so you can write/draw on them more naturally. Even at that, they are usually too thick, making writing uncomfortable.
    • by theNote (319197)
      You don't HAVE to use it on your laptop screen, the article said it could be used on any flat surface.
    • Yes, an age old problem that's been recognised since touchscreens were touted as the panacea to all usability woes [catb.org].
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      I know it's not ideal but you could just fold the screen backwards so it's parallel to the desk. Or perhaps have the screen upside down and put the keyboard furthest away from you.
      • by Kwiik (655591)
        For all laptops that I've ever seen (except tablets) 1) folding the screen backwards so that it's parallel to the desk (if it can go parallel to the desk.. I've only ever seen that in Dell's) will cause it to push on the hinges as the parent to you complained, and 2) if you put the screen upside down with the keyboard furthest away, you'll end up not being balanced and it'll fall back on to the keyboard. Maybe there's some ancient laptops that break this rule, but I highly doubt it.

        • Ah, your right I've just tried it on my old IBM one. It goes further down than parallel, however, it definitely is putting strain on the hinges.
    • by srmalloy (263556)

      Who wants to hold their arm out, hovering over the keyboard,...

      A telling observation, since it was gorilla arm [catb.org] that pretty much killed the touchscreen as a primary input device (except for applications where the user only spends a short time using the device, such as ATM screens).

      • by drinkypoo (153816)
        There's nothing wrong with touchscreens, it's all in the way they are used. If it was located where your keyboard is normally located - as it often is in a kiosk situation - then it wouldn't be causing that problem, would it? But it certainly doesn't apply to all situations. On the other hand, if I could get a Wacom tablet combined with a gigantic LCD, and I could just take it off a stand and set it on my desktop to draw, I would be interested. (I hear they exist but cost more than a car...)
      • by Danse (1026)

        A telling observation, since it was gorilla arm that pretty much killed the touchscreen as a primary input device (except for applications where the user only spends a short time using the device, such as ATM screens).

        On a related note, I just spent a week walking around various facilities for 8 hours a day holding a tablet PC and entering data using the touchscreen and onscreen keypad as needed. While the screen-tapping wasn't too bad as long as I could rest my wrist against the tablet (which helped with

    • Well if it works half decent (need more info on the pen and any features), you could take a cheap 15 lcd a piece of plexiglass and make a decent sketchpad. Yes, it won't compare to something made for the purpose, but then again, probably an 1/10th of the price.
  • Why LCD only? (Score:2, Interesting)

    Seems the only thing making this thing LCD-only is the design of the plastic clip for the sensor that determins the position of the stylus. Any geek worth his bandwidth could use this with a CRT.

    Very interesting product either way. Seems better and cheaper than a Wacom.
    • Curves of CRT? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by tepples (727027)

      Seems the only thing making this thing LCD-only is the design of the plastic clip for the sensor that determins the position of the stylus.
      That and the tendency of cheap CRT screens to be curved in one or both of their dimensions, and possibly the static electricity that builds up on a CRT.
      • Oh, right. I was just thinking of my own retired flat CRT. I've cursed the name of the sometimes ball-formed CRTs ever since I got the flat one, years ago. So much easier on the eyes, so much better accuracy. Funny thing is the old 17" Viewsonic (G73fm) of mine still compares rather well with today's CRTs.

        The product page however still says that you can use the gadget with any flat surface, but I don't have the heart to tell more of my fellow Slashdotters to RTFA. There's no need to ruin your LCD.

        One thing
        • Yeah but the nice thing about WACOMs is that you can stick a piece of paper over the top of the tablet and regain all that lovely texture all for about $0.005.
    • by aarggh (806617)
      As this is basically electronic whiteboard technology applied to a laptop, it probably will only work with a flat screen CRT if at all. Although for an LCD as mentioned it seems a ludicrous product. Definately the fastest way to destroy the LCD and void a warranty! Some cheap end solutions end up quite expensive!
    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Seems better and cheaper than a Wacom.
      Cheaper, perhaps. I'm not quite sure how you translate "lower resolution and no pressure or tilt sensitivity" into "better", but hey, whatever floats your boat...
    • by nametaken (610866)

      Except Wacoms have pressure sensitivity, don't they?
  • Smashing (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Bazman (4849) on Monday May 07, 2007 @08:04AM (#19019185) Journal
    Quite literally. Laptop screens aren't designed to be touched, let alone scraped and prodded all over with a stylus. Or does this thing come with a plexiglass overlay?

  • by WillAdams (45638) on Monday May 07, 2007 @08:04AM (#19019189) Homepage
    The touch screens and active stylus input displays have a thick glass or plexiglass or other durable substance to protect the screen, but every LCD (laptop or desktop) I've ever set up has a warning about not touching the screen in w/ the setup / operating instructions.

    My boss and several co-workers regularly touch the LCDs here in the office, making the surface bend and distorting the image and it makes me wince everytime.

    William
    (who is looking forward to _all_ LCDs coming w/ some sort of digitizer built-in after manufacturers decide the added durability and lessened expense of one manufacturing line instead of two makes economic sense)
    • Well, I touch my LCD too, and it still seems to be fine. If the people at your office touch them regularly and they still havent gotten any permanent damage, then whats the problem?
      • by Fred_A (10934)
        The people in my office who touched my screens certainly got some damage, typically through the whacking of the offending digit or high pitched screaming along the lines of "get your greasy fingers off my screen you pervert!". The damage probably wasn't permanent but the message usually was permanently imprinted.
        The screens were all right though.
    • by Kris_J (10111) *
      We've got a couple of Panasonic 17" LCD screens with a glass front. Makes them heavy, but trivial to clean.
    • by billcopc (196330)
      Duuuuude... it's never been about economic sense. It's about how much more are you going to pay for that little extra gimmick that only 1% of all customers really want ? I think it would make economic sense for my $500 gaming-class video card to have 8 outputs, but in reality I would have to pay $800 for an special-purpose video card with a GPU from the dark ages in order to accomplish that. Sale price has very little to do with manufacturing cost.

      Personally, I'm pissed off that there are still so few t
      • Well, Fujitsu has been (profitably!) making pen computers for well over a decade, so I can't imagine them stopping, and they're large enough that I can't see them going away any time soon, and their warranty support is quite good by all accounts.

        William
        (who bought a Stylistic 'cause he got tired of waiting for Apple to make a replacement for his Newton)
    • by feagle814 (640886)
      I've taken apart my Tablet screen and it's just a normal LCD screen with a thin piece of glass in front (anti-glare treated) and a Wacom digitizer behind it. They don't manufacture the LCD special for it; they just sandwich it between tablet parts.
      • by WillAdams (45638)
        Right, but wouldn't it be better / cheaper / more integrated if they built the digitizer integrated into the display components?

        Also, the thin piece of glass in the Tablet screen is in addition to the normal piece LCD pane --- adding this contributes to the parallax problem one gets w/ the offset caused by the display being beneath a panel to begin with.

        William
  • ICK. (Score:4, Informative)

    by Lumpy (12016) on Monday May 07, 2007 @08:08AM (#19019213) Homepage
    Needs a pen, that sucks. I prefer real touchscreens where you simply touch them like the ELO.
    as for photoshoppers, doodling on a monitor sucks. Using a pen tablet on the desk is far easier and way more intuitive as well as not having your hand and pen device in the way blocking your view.

    This is a neat device, but for the price you can get kits from ebay to add a real touchscreen layer to your lcd or laptop instead of something that requires a special pen.
    • by Fred_A (10934)

      Needs a pen, that sucks. I prefer real touchscreens where you simply touch them like the ELO.
      as for photoshoppers, doodling on a monitor sucks. Using a pen tablet on the desk is far easier and way more intuitive as well as not having your hand and pen device in the way blocking your view.
      Not to mention a bad case of gorilla arm [wikipedia.org] after 10 minutes of work.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Cesa (972909)
      What you could do is using a dual screen setup, with the touchscreen monitor lying down on the desktop like a piece of paper. Extend the windows desktop over both screens and move the child window with the picture to the touchscreen monitor. That way your hand won't be in the way any more than when you draw/write on a piece of paper, and you don't have to wave your arm in the air.
      • by Kwiik (655591)
        Or just clone the monitors. I wouldn't mind placing a 17" touch screen where my keyboard normally rolls out of my desk, and putting the actual keyboard up on the desk. It'd be even more beautiful considering my desk is made of glass ^_^
    • by skiflyer (716312)
      I dunno... I have one of the Lenovo multi-touch screens... and I find myself using the pen about 90% of the time for the accuracy. I thought I'd use my finger all the time, and for apps that are designed for a touch screen (read big buttons, no menus) I do... but the pen really isn't so bad. But the multi-touch (pen + finger) is definitely a path I'm glad to have, would be annoyed at this point if you took either or away from me.
      • by Lumpy (12016)
        The thing is, the designs for the pen only systems suck. you have to buy a special $100+ pen if you lose yours. Finger sensitive work great, a $3.00 stylus works on them in the way you want it.

        Most of the sucky tablets have the wacom style magnetic pen system. worse ones have a battery in the pen.
        Only the best are resistive types that give an X+Y signal back and are typically found on high end commercial touchscreens.

        so you get both because you have a finger sensitive type. if you got the other type you
  • Photoshoppers ? (Score:4, Informative)

    by fruey (563914) on Monday May 07, 2007 @08:10AM (#19019225) Homepage Journal
    A serious graphic artist probably wants a CRT for accurate colour, gamma, etc. And at least an A4 Wacom if they prefer drawing, but on a horizontal rather than vertical surface.

    Most pros I know use a Wacom in Photoshop or Illustrator, but mostly they're mouse people.

    I can't imagine that a serious Photoshopper would want to use an LCD screen and draw on it with a stylus, it's just not accurate enough.

    • OT: CRT Vs LCD (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      I considered myself a holdout but I just replaced the last of our CRTs. If you're designing for screen, output is increasingly going to be viewed on a flat panel. If you're designing for print, RGB output is always inaccurate.

      LCD displays have improved since the late 90s and the advantages of CRT monitors are becoming fallacy.
    • Re:Photoshoppers ? (Score:4, Informative)

      by ameline (771895) <ian.ameline@nOSPAM.gmail.com> on Monday May 07, 2007 @09:20AM (#19019787) Homepage Journal
      Look at a wacom cintiq -- they're really nice.

      The reason they're mouse people more than tablet people is that most software sucks on a tablet -- many on the common UI elements that work well with a mouse fail completely on a tablet. You really have to design with pen based interaction in mind.

      Look at Alias SketchBook for an example of a UI that works well on tablets

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by TheDrop (1098769)
      "I can't imagine that a serious Photoshopper would want to use an LCD screen and draw on it with a stylus, it's just not accurate enough."

      I'm about as serious as they come in regards to Photoshop and completely disagree with you. I use a Cintiq [wacom.com] (Wacom) daily which is a LCD screen controlled by a stylus. And sketching on screen with a stylus is unequivocally superior to sketching with a mouse (and on a separate tablet IMHO). It is simply natural to look at what your drawing.

      In regards to TFA, pressure

      • by fruey (563914)
        A Cintiq looks great, but it's not like a crummy laptop screen.

        And it looks like it can be tilted correctly, so that you can "write" / draw on it properly.

        You're right about pressure sensitivity too, hadn't thought of that (not being a Wacom user or designer, although I use Photoshop for serious photo touch-up, I'm not someone who'll draw / illustrate in software)
    • by nbritton (823086)

      I can't imagine that a serious Photoshopper would want to use an LCD screen
      We don't... until you add in the price and space requirements for a good 21 inch moitor.
  • I don't mind that it uses a stylus, I use one on my Waacom tablet.

    But Jesus, why does it have to be this huge cancerous growth hanging off the side of the laptop?
  • Only $100? (Score:2, Interesting)

    This could turn out to be a very cost effective solution for Point of Sale registers. Touch screen flat panels are expensive (and flat panels are popular with PoS devices since they take up much less counter space) so this could lower costs per register by $100 -$200.
    • for the short amount of time until you wear/poke right through the not-supposed-to-touch-me LCD screen, and it becomes an LCLOSINLAD*. And then you'll have to buy another one. So, the up-front savings will be short-lived. You'll be much better off buying the right device for the job.

      (*Liquid Crystals Leaked Out So It's No Longer A Display)
    • A Point of Sale terminal has to work with finger input. Having to use a stylus would create too many problems. How would you like to wait in line at McDonalds while the cashier crawls under the cabinet looking for the dropped stylus!
  • by bl8n8r (649187) on Monday May 07, 2007 @08:21AM (#19019333)
    or you'll exhaust all your server resour.... forget it.
  • touchscreens, ugh... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by dmnic (452122)
    other than in a POS or evoting application, I honestly do not see why why people want a touchscreen.

    I'm talking about a laptop/tablet configuration.
    yes, the idea sounds great and people will say that their productivity will increase, yada, yada, yada, but MOST people who say this have never used one or experienced the frustration when their touchscreen goes out of calibration, which will happen ALOT!!!

    I support a salesforce of about 200 who use various touchscreen PCs from HP Ipaq to Fujitsu tablets and lap
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by maxume (22995)
      So what you are saying is that they don't work right so people don't like them, even though they find the idea very attractive? Most technology doesn't really catch on until it actually works right, so I'm not sure why you are surprised.
  • slashdotted (Score:2, Informative)

    by eneville (745111)
    looks like the host is slashdotted, here is a mirrordot link to the first page of the article, does anyone have a better mirror of this site?

    http://www.mirrordot.org/stories/a3c962572c00cfd47 6bc23e2cfff8f72/index.html [mirrordot.org]
  • Neat! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mattr (78516) <.mattr. .at. .telebody.com.> on Monday May 07, 2007 @08:30AM (#19019405) Homepage Journal
    Last time I read /. at 0 that's for sure. A bunch of people worried about pressing on an LCD not designed for it, and then a bunch of trolls. Guess all stories are like this.

    The company's in Korea. Any slashdotters there trying it with linux / trying it out in the store?
    This could really hurt Anoto, which makes an extremely advanced system of bluetooth/optical recognition pens and special paper using a pattern that is unique for every page.

    Anoto, like the Flypen toy based on its tech, has all kinds of applications. For example a checkbox called "Fax" at the bottom of a sheet of paper that when you check it, it gets faxed. Navisis has a portable version for pdas and maybe phones, called the phone pen which looks quite cool, and the mouse version that works on your table top is quite neat too. They do sell protective covering for your lcd as well, anyway I'd like to hear from someone who really uses it, and then hear about if it just looks like a mouse to the system or if it needs a driver.
    • by mattr (78516)
      I also give points to them for their "The Little Prince" illustration. (the hat shaped object is a snake that swallowed an elephant...) I like these guys!
  • Cool, but (Score:1, Redundant)

    by pipingguy (566974) *
    what about gorilla arm [wikipedia.org]?
  • This is very good news. At last we got a separate device which I can hook up to any screen and which provides touchscreen functionality. Well, yes it's windoze only and laptop only but hey, the technology is here and I think they will be making devices like this for other monitors and OS's a well. I always hated windowing environments with OK/Cancel/etc buttons because they made me use the mouse. Touchscreen and pen is better because you may look where you point your cursor AND see your hand and pen at the
    • by Ash-Fox (726320)
      I don't like touchscreens, because you always end up with dirty screens really quickly.

      I wonder how you would play FPSes with touchscreens...
  • Which basically tape over an existing screen, LCD or CRT. I briefly investigated them for an epos system I was putting together but eventually decided on a ELO screen, why add hassle you don't need.

    e.g.
    http://www.magictouch.com/builtin.html [magictouch.com]

    Given a few years, they'll be built into almost all screens.
     
  • This sounds like a device we use occasionally in our office. I wish I knew what it was called so I could link it.. but I'll just have to deal with describing it. You attach the device to the corner of a whiteboard, use a special marker, and it records your writing. You can then plug the device into a laptop via USB to download the board notes. We've had this thing for at least 2 years.

    Sounds like simliar technology.
  • They should call it the Power Pen. It's so bad.
  • This being Slashdot...

    an alternative for Photoshoppers...

    and GIMP/GIMP pimps/GIMPoids/GIMPles/GIMPhomaniacs

    take your pick
     
    • Or how about just plain "GIMP users". Oh, unless you want to troll about GIMP's name, right. Forget what I said.
    • by doti (966971)
      Let's just accept that "photoshop" now means raster image editing. I use Linux exclusively for many, but when I manipulate an image with GIMP I still say I "photoshop" it.
  • Am I the only one thinking...

    cool, I'll just spend an extra $100 on a 17" or 19" LCD monitor and lie it flat on the desk. I'll drive it with the second monitor output of my graphics card. For screen protection I'll buy some kind of 3M film from staples for $10 a roll or a 200 pack of laser printable transparency sheets.

    or even - I could roll my own context sensitive touch tablet, instead of a $1500 OLED keyboard

    ...with new gadgets comes new opportunities.
  • by snowwrestler (896305) on Monday May 07, 2007 @09:50AM (#19020147)
    I think you meant to say "graphics professionals who use the software application Adobe Photoshop®."

    sincerely,
    - Adobe
  • by z_gringo (452163)
    Well, im reading that and thinking wow, that is interesting.

    Until I get to: The gadget is priced at around $100 and seems a good alternative for Photoshoppers.

    Im not much of a phtotoshopper, but what unmet need does this meet for photoshoppers?

    • A tablet is superior to a mouse for just about any photoediting purpose, and most drawing purposes. So yeah, it's an alternative. However, most of the value of having a tablet is its pressure sensitivity, which this device does not have. So I wouldn't say it's a 'good' alternative to a real tablet.
  • Looking at the technology of this device, it does not monitor touch, but instead the position of the pen. A "real" touchscreen does not require a special pen to register a touch, your finger is typically used. There are many types of touchscreens, some actually respond to the force of your touch (resistive technology), some sense the capacitance of your finger, others the acoustic damping caused by your touch, and a new technoloty even "listens" to the sound of your touch and calculates where you touched.
  • 1. is it 'ultra' enough to be completely inaudible? I've had some experience with ultrasonic devices for cleaning etc. and they are unbearable to be around due to the high-pitched shriek they emit. To be fair, this is at much higher power levels than this pen will use.

    2. Ultrasonics can be quite destructive, both on the laptop screen and on the bones in your hand (again, more of a problem at high power levels).
  • "Enjoyable ink chatting on MSN Messenger."
  • It's not a touch screen, it's a Light Pen [wikipedia.org], straight outta 1957. Everything old is new again...
    • by DaveV1.0 (203135)
      No, it is not. This and a lightpen use completely different technologies and position detection systems.
  • > The gadget is priced at around $100 and seems a good alternative for Photoshoppers."

    In the same way that a cut finger is an alternative to a pencil.

    Actual art tablets that are specifically designed to use with Photoshop (and vice versa) start at $99.
  • There seem to be a lot of comments saying that this device is useless to artists because of lack of resolution and pressure sensitivity. True, but it misses the point. I used to use a Psion 7, a lovely little A5 size clamshell machine running a proprietary OS. It was ideal for taking notes in meetings as I could go straight from touch-typing to sketching a diagram straight into the word processor. These days I use MS OneNote, which is slightly more clumsy in that respect (much better in other ways). If I ha
  • I have a business and have implemented the use of a S/W program that is heavily based on touchscreen technology for production. The funny thing is that I have gone through 2 of these expensive suckers (CRT & LCD) before getting smart. I now buy cheap lcd's and cheap overlays!! The cost is almost a third of the price of the complete unit and work great. But here's the real funny thing, I always, always always, always check a technology company's bottom line of their web site for their copyright date to

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