Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Wacom + Keypads = Steno?

Could this be an answer to our steno hardware problem? It talks about unlimited multitouch, up to 20 fingers or more. If you program in a steno keyboard layout and stick some keypads on there for ergonomic feedback, could that serve as a poor man's Lightspeed? The question is whether it'll actually be cheaper. Low-end drawing tablets have gotten quite reasonable in price; I saw one at Staples the other day that boasted multitouch (meaning up to three inputs at a time) and went for only $50. But this looks like a flagship model, and I know some of the top-of-the-line drawing tablets go for several thousand. Still, there's a lot bigger market out there for those than there currently is for steno machines, so if the price comes down in a year or two we might have our solution.

6 comments:

bigporch said...

Thanks for posting info on Wacom's Unlimited Finger Touch System Prototype. I am a steno student looking into "the future" of hardware in this field. Whatever happened to the Stenovations Lightspeed keyboard? I haven't learned anything about software yet, but as an older student, I am looking ahead at the eventual fatigue using the traditional keyboard. Do you think we are we all going to be using an ipad some day? Because I've not been able to find anything about the Lightspeed, I've got to wonder if the technology has been bought up and filed away somewhere....

Mirabai Knight said...

Hi, Bigporch. The Stenovations Lightspeed is very popular. I know lots of people who own them and like them a lot.

There's even a forum devoted to them:

http://www.depoman.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=17&sid=b430bc3861c594126daf62bb2027fe2b

If you want one, I think you can order one from here:

http://www.stenovations.com/lightspeed/lightspeedhome.html

bigporch said...

The reason I mentioned "whatever happened...?" is that it appears you can't order a keyboard from the website. I haven't actually called the company number yet, but if you go to the products page (unless I am really missing something) there are none available: https://www.stenovations.com/products/index.php

Mirabai Knight said...

It's probably worth a call. I've noticed that internet ordering is broken on several steno machine companies' sites, even though I know for a fact they're still selling them. Good luck, and let me know how it goes! If I were to buy a non-ergonomic machine, it would probably be a LightSpeed, but I'm holding out for a homebrew version, once Plover gets off the ground.

Ryan Phelps said...

It might be the answer to our steno hardware problem. If they will be releasing this product in the market, I think people will dig this.

keypads

Mirabai Knight said...

Huh. Yeah, thank for the link, Ryan. That Capacitive switch film looks especially interesting. I wish I had more electronics knowledge; I'd love to cook up a wearable steno keypad out of that stuff.