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Haptic Touchscreen

Braille meets iPad
  (+6, -1)
(+6, -1)
  [vote for,

Yay, touchscreens!

They're everywhere these days - but what if you're driving the car, and you want to reach down and turn the volume up or down without taking your eyes off the road?

Enter the haptic touchscreen - an elasticated flexible display that presents knobs and buttons that extend out from the display into the z-axis.

The driver reaches down, feeling for the knob, and twists it between thumb and forefinger, just like a 'real' knob and in response, the volume increases.

When the device is turned off, the raised knobs and buttons sink back into the surface of the screen.

Implementation might be the result of a combination of elasic flexible display pressed forward by a series of actuated pins, or liquid-pistons embedded behind the display.

zen_tom, Jun 07 2011

Imdb link to Videodrome http://m.imdb.com/title/tt0086541/
[Dub, Jun 09 2011]

Tactile computer interface with electromagnets http://hackaday.com...ith-electromagnets/
[Dub, Oct 26 2011]

Pretty much baked http://www.popsci.c...-inflatable-buttons
No rotating knobs, but raised or lowered buttons using a flexible membrane display [EdZ, Oct 26 2011]

Why Haptic is needed http://worrydream.c...fInteractionDesign/
An excellent summation of the shortcomings of touchscreens [AusCan531, Nov 10 2011]

Pinscreen toy http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pin_Art
[AusCan531, Nov 10 2011]

A Touch Screen That Touches Back http://news.discove...html#mkcpgn=rssnws1
[Dub, Dec 07 2011]


       Nice for the porn market.
Sir_Misspeller, Jun 07 2011

       People have attempted to bake this for a very long time (maybe not rotating knobs, but buttons that emboss out of a touchscreen and are clickable). The practicalities of building it mean it hasn't made it to the consumer market yet.
mitxela, Jun 07 2011

       I have seen people reading from Braille screens, which show a pattern using a grid of raised pins - it shouldn't be too hard to convert one of these into a touchscreen - i.e. something which allows input.
hippo, Jun 07 2011

       It's my prediction for the next "big-thing". There's been talk of flexible screen-displays for some time now, and most speculation I've seen has been around wearing screens on your clothes, or carrying around a 'scroll' computer - but neither of those are particularly exciting, as I don't want to be a screen, and I don't find a scroll a particularly helpful form. But I can imagine in certain conditions (cars particularly due to the common requirement to 'feel' for a control rather than take your eyes off the road) that a software-controllable configurable surface that accepts touch-sensitive inputs would be most helpful. Going back to the flexible screens, I think we're still a while away from an elastic version.   

       The second part would be expensive - I've been trying to think of a way you could get ferrofluid to stack up in digitally discrete points, pushing out any material stretched over their surface - and then, to register the amount of pressure that's being exerted on them from, for example, a finger.   

       Initial versions might only present buttons that stand only 1-2mm 'proud' which would be enough for a fingertip to register, and the elastic properties of the led-lit screen may mean that the edges are not as sharp as you might like, but progress a few years and we should be looking at bass-reliefs that might protrude by 2-3cm, and have crisp, well defined edges around them.
zen_tom, Jun 07 2011

       Or gloves, with motion sensors and tactile stimulators (e.g. piezoelectric, pneumatic), plus very fancy software to stimulate the right part of your hand depending on the position of your fingers.
mouseposture, Jun 08 2011

       Gonflable displays? Imagine how good the Bubblewrap app would be!   

       Somewhat reminiscent of the film Videodrome
Dub, Jun 09 2011

       I like the idea of using fibre-optic pins (instead of opaque metal pins as on the pinscreen toy) where the image and tactility occupy the same space on the screen. Obviously you will have to have multiple pixels per pin but it would still work.
AusCan531, Nov 10 2011

       I was looking at old (1990s and 2000s) screenshots and thinking how ancient they looked now, how crude and retro. Then I thought of the glossy new ipad and smartphone screens and wondered how they could possibly look old-fashioned in 20 years time. I mean, in 1995 you could have held up a glossy printed art book beside the computer screen and clearly seen the difference. Now, a top end device probably looks better than a quality printed book.   

       Then, I looked at a beautiful hand-made wood sculpture I have beside me, finely made from old wood, carved and engraved, partly painted with mineral pigments, polished to a deep lusture with beeswax and with silver fittings - I assume that soon, displays will look and feel actually like that.
pocmloc, Dec 07 2011


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