Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Input Device

The open-source, self-build Tworsekey interface allows users to tap short messages in Mors...

Urgent messages sent using Morse Code via radio waves or by electrical telegraphy are, by necessity, quite short - after all, you don't want to spend all day dotting and dashing your way through War and Peace. These days, of course, if you want to send the latest piece of gossip or news to those near and dear there are quite a few quicker options - from email to instant messaging and Facebook to Twitter. For users of the latter networking platform who are looking for a novel way to merge the old with the new, Martin Kaltenbrummer's open source Tworsekey Morse Code interface can deliver messages direct to the Twitter API via Ethernet LAN.  Read More

The 60beat GamePad plugs into iDevices via their 3.5 mm headphone jack

While the success of Apple’s iDevices has prompted a swathe of games perfectly suited to a touchscreen interface, many types of games suffer when making the transition from a controller-based interface. As a result we’ve seen a number of peripherals designed to add a physical controller to iOS devices, such as the GameBone Pro, iControlPad and low-tech JOYSTICK-IT. Those looking for a slightly more traditional input device for their mobile gaming needs now have another product to consider in the form of the 60beat GamePad.  Read More

3Dconnexion has updated its 3D mice lineup with the SpaceMouse Pro

There are basically two groups of users that require the most advanced, ergonomic and multitask-capable input peripherals - hardcore gamers and professionals working with sophisticated software. 3Dconnexion has updated its lineup of 3D mice aimed at the latter group of users with the SpaceMouse Pro. The new arrival is equipped with six-degrees-of-freedom sensor for manipulating 3D objects, 15 programmable keys and an on-screen display.  Read More

The Thanko USB Foot Switch allows computer users to perform keyboard or mouse functions vi...

If you find that having your hands on the keyboard and mouse still isn’t giving you enough control over your computer, perhaps you’d like to let your feet in on the action, too. While some people might think that's overkill, it’s precisely what the Thanko USB Foot Switch lets you do. Available as either a single pedal or a joined trio, the floor-located device plugs into your PC’s USB port, and controls a function (or three) of your choice via foot taps.  Read More

The Quillit 3 in 1 Stylus Pen features retractable stylii for capacitive (left) and resist...

While fingers are by far and away the most popular form of input device for touchscreens these days, using a stylus offers an accuracy that stubby fingers like mine just can’t match. While just about any stick of plastic will do for resistive touchscreens, capacitive touchscreens that rely on a distortion of the screen’s electrostatic field require a stylus that is electrically conducting. If your day finds you switching between devices that use different touchscreen technologies then the new Quillit 3 in 1 Stylus Pen from Proporta will cover all the bases. It will even let you interact with that most ancient of displays – paper – as it its third function is as an ordinary pen.  Read More

The evoMouse turns a flat surface into a virtual trackpad

With the plethora of mouse alternatives available or in development you'd be forgiven for thinking the humble computer mouse was some kind of torturous device inflicted upon computer users. But despite challengers such as the trackball, the WOW-PEN Joy, the ErgoSlider Plus, the Orbita Mouse and the AirMouse – just to name a few – the mouse has maintained its dominance while remaining largely unchanged since its unveiling in 1968. Now there's another alternative cursor relocation device set to hit the market called the evoMouse that turns just about any flat surface into a virtual trackpad with your finger as the pointer.  Read More

The ErgoSlider Plus is an alternative to the traditional computer mouse

First achieving widespread use with the release of the Apple Macintosh in 1984, the humble computer mouse has reigned supreme as the digital pointing device of choice for more than 20 years. During this time it has seen off countless pretenders to the throne, as well as undergoing some useful (and otherwise) redesigns such as Apple's Magic Mouse, Microsoft's Arc, the 3D-Spheric-Mouse, the AirMouse and the Orbita. The latest product to take a shot at the title is the ErgoSlider Plus+, a device that looks like a padded wrist rest, but with a cylinder at the front that rolls and slides in a special groove to move the onscreen cursor.  Read More

The 8pen app for Android touch phones offers a faster and more natural text input app for ...

A faster and more natural text input app for small devices, which mimics handwriting and eliminates typos. Sounds good? That is what the 8pen app for Android touch phones offers.  Read More

The Truly Ergonomic Keyboard claims to offer typists a more natural, less painful way to t...

There are a number of keyboards that claim to be ergonomic, but only one claims to be "truly ergonomic." Many input devices available today stagger the keys across the available keying area, resulting in even the most proficient touch typist having to move around more than is desirable. The makers of the Truly Ergonomic Keyboard claim that their redesign brings all keys within easy reach, which should lead to decreased discomfort in a world where most of us spend much of our lives tapping away in front of one computer screen or another.  Read More

The Mouseless invisible mouse system is the next logical step in input periperhal developm...

Pranav Mistry, Pattie Maes and Liyan Chang from MIT's Media Lab have managed to create an invisible computer mouse for just a few dollars. Using an Infrared laser and tracking camera, the Mouseless system registers and interprets a user's hand movement and translates it into onscreen actions such as cursor movement and button clicking.  Read More

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