Wednesday, July 13, 2005


New-age keyboard: Trace, don't write | CNET

A good article on CNETon Shark, a software-based keyboard that many of us tablet pc users have been trying out the past year.

It may not be long before you can input data into your smart phone using a space-age Etch-a-Sketch. IBM has come up with an experimental keyboard system that lets users write by connecting the dots.
Shark (Shorthand-Aided Rapid Keyboarding) is an advanced pen-based shorthand method that allows users to input words into mobile devices by tracing them letter by letter on a virtual keyboard. Instead of tapping independently on four virtual keys with a stylus to spell "word," for example, consumers would put the stylus on "w" and then carve a continuous trail all the way to "d."
"What we are doing is creating a human-machine code," said Shumin Zhai, a research staff member at IBM Almaden Research Center, said during a presentation at the New Paradigms for Using Computers conference in Silicon Valley on Monday. "It uses geometrical patterns to represent words." As an aside, he added, "We're back to carving symbols on rocks."

Sorry, hit the button too quick. The article I gave the link for is linked on the IBM Almaden research website by Mr. Zhai who is quoted in the CNET article. Cool.
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