Devices like Smart Kapp and Livescribe's extensive line of clever pens are just some of the ways you can stream your scribbles to digital displays in real time. The thing is, though, they also require that you to write on certain purpose-built materials like whiteboards, dotted paper or even microwaveable notebooks. Looking to break free of these limitations is Israeli startup OTM Technologies – its Phree Bluetooth smartpen shoots a laser beam from its tip to allow you to write on just about any surface you like.
If you're into handwriting, drawing, keeping diaries the old fashioned
way and sipping wine, you may soon be able to merge all those activities
into one. A new device created by Portland-based designer Jessica Chan
adds a bohemian touch to the old fountain pen, by allowing it to be
charged with any type of raw liquid with a staining property, including –
you guessed it – wine. Called WINKpen, it also uses tea, beer, and
anything else that tickles the user's fancy.
By repurposing and updating an e-paper technology from the 1970s, researchers from the University of Tokyo have created a cheap but tough new electronic display that can be written on with a magnet. This new e-paper could be used in low-cost, lightweight electronic whiteboards as well as traditional classroom blackboards, and its creators hope that it will eventually reduce our dependence on real paper.
The development of tight, cramped cursive as a result of degenerating motor control is a common symptom of Parkinson's disease. Known as micrographia, this condition can often lead people to put down their pens forever, but a team of British engineers say there might yet be hope for sufferer's of this dispiriting ailment. Dopa Solution's ARC pen is a vibrating writing device that stimulates muscles in the hand, giving those with Parkinson's better control when putting pen to paper.
With touchscreens and keyboards never far from our fingertips these days, paper notebooks might not be as essential as they once were. But there's still something pleasant, if not always convenient, about putting pen to paper. The latest book to join a growing library of digitally inspired writing platforms is Rocketbook, and it does so with an interesting twist. In addition to shooting handwritten notes and doodles to the cloud, when it fills up users can stick the book in the microwave to wipe its pages clean.
While email has certainly made it much quicker and easier to keep in touch with people, there's still something really nice about receiving a tangible hand-written letter. That's why the Bond service was created. It uses a pen-holding robot to create a "hand-written" note in your
handwriting, which is then snail-mailed to a recipient of your choice.
We humans are obsessed with storytelling. We tell stories to people we meet and people we love. We can't get enough of the stories that drive movies, video games, television, and books. We communicate with stories, and now we're training our computers to do the same. By writing sets of rules and instructions of varying complexity, artificial intelligence experts can enable computers to write stories both real and fictional. Some of these algorithms, as you'll see shortly, produce articles or reports with the sort of flair you'd think only a human could provide, which has fascinating implications for the future of publishing.
Having tasked technologists with challenges as diverse as Ted Talkin' artificial intelligence
and bringing Star Trek's iconic tricorder
to life, XPrize
has now turned its attention to an equally ambitious task. Millions of children around the globe don't have basic literacy skills, presenting a problem that cannot be solved without some big picture thinking. Launching today, the Global Learning XPrize offers US$15 million in prize money for the development of software that teaches children these vital skills in the space of 18 months, without the presence of a teacher.
Drawing or making notes with a computer pen or stylus doesn't have the same feeling as using a paper and pen. Sometimes, however, you want to digitize something that you've drawn or written by hand. The new Moleskine Livescribe notebooks let you do both at the same time.
Back in May we reported on plans to create the Scribble
– a pen that can scan and reproduce any color you can find on the fly. After the project smashed its Kickstarter target in just five hours, those plans are now one big step closer to reality.