Touch screen technology was originally created during the 1970's. Though the years of development, touch screen technology has become apart of our routine lives in order to simplify daily tasks. This technology has more improvements to be made in order to benefit other aspects of the human life.
Mobile, handheld technology has become a common part of our daily lives, and the integration of touchscreen technology into mobile handheld devices is quickly becoming equally common. Much research has been conducted on how people interact with handheld devices and on different types and uses of touchscreen technology. However, little attention has been given to how touchscreens, when integrated with handheld mobile devices, either inhibit communication by frustrating users or encourage communication by ease of use.
The practice of conceptualizing with drawing, note taking, and diagramming has always been indispensable to many disciplines in sharing our thinking in creating and shaping Ideas. However, sharing how these processes actually form an individual’s idea has proved illusive in the past. In keeping with SHU’s commitment to the use of technology in teaching and problem solving, electronic drawing tablets, touch screen technology and screen cast software provide our students a better, more spontaneous means of developing and delivering creative content.
Nearly 9 out of every 10 ruggedized computers on the market today come equipped with touch capability, which may significantly enhance the deployability and usability of mobile devices in the field. Deployability is improved as computers are designed without an external keyboard and mouse, as well as small in size, but operational through the use of a finger or stylus pen. Responders find touch screen-enabled computers usable as they may be operated while hand carried or positioned on the wall of a vehicle, and used to capture signatures and hand written notations that might otherwise be difficult.
While touch sensing is commonplace for single points of contact, multi-touch sensing enables a user to interact with a system with more than one finger at a time, as in chording and bi-manual operations. Such sensing devices are inherently also able to accommodate multiple users simultaneously, which is especially useful for larger interaction scenarios such as interactive walls and tabletops.
An area of particular interest in touch technology is haptic feedback. Haptic feedback refers to the vibrations felt when contacting a touchscreen which “denote that a touchscreen button has been pressed” (Oryl). This kind of feedback is an important aspect of human-computer interactions, as Brewster et al. discovered (161).
Resistive touch screens are pressure sensitive, so they can be operated with any input device, including a gloved hand or stylus. However, resistive screens can be easily damaged by sharp objects, and they offer only 75% clarity, which may create additional problems for people with low vision.
Smartphone-makers have been researching on different ways users interact with the touchscreen. On the Samsung Galaxy Note II, Samsung is experimenting with the active digitizing S Pen stylus so that users can hover over the screen to pull down drop down menus. On Nokia’s latest Windows Phone 8 Lumia offerings, the company is partnering with Synaptics to bring a hyper-sensitive touchscreen that works with fingernails and gloves, though additional gestures and functionality is not enabled with that mode.
Winter of 2012, stores everywhere have created and sold touch screen gloves. The finger tips would have a certain senetivity that could conduct the electricity form your fingertip in order to move the cursor on your phone. If Synaptics created a touch screen where fingernails and gloves would be registered as a touch, wouldn't it be more likely for the screen to identify other objects that touch the screen accidentally as a touch too?
The capacitive touch screen is comprised of multiple layers of glass. A thin film of a conductive coating is fused to one of its inner layers. A narrow, precisely imprinted pattern of electrodes is placed along the outer edges of the glass. With an oscillator circuit attached to each corner of the screen, a low voltage electric field is produced. When touched, the properties of the electric field is changed. This change is then detected by the touch screen's controller and the software computes the point of screen contact. Strengths of capacitive technology include a fast response time, durability and a tolerance for surface contamination. Grease, water and dirt will not interfere with the capacitive screen's speed, accuracy or resolution like they can with surface acoustic wave or infrared touch screens. Unfortunately, this technology does not work well in environments where workers wear insulated gloves. In those cases, an alternate input source such as a capacitive pen can be used.
Touch screens today are frequently used for information kiosks, automated teller machines (ATMs), airline e-ticket terminals, and customer self-service stations in retail stores, libraries, and fast food restaurants. Touch screens are also the most common means of input into personal digital assistants (PDAs). In the field of education, touch screen stations are being installed in K-12, postsecondary, and corporate learning environments to facilitate interaction between the learner and the content to be learned. In elementary schools, students who don't have keyboard and mouse skills can use touch screens to access rich computer-based content. Researchers are actively exploring ways to integrate touch screens more fully into educational environments, such as building touch screen functionality into walls, student desks, and other objects in the learning environment.
This idea would be great for those too young to type on a traditional keyboard. Say a todler is watching Dora the Explorer, and the toddler can touch the screen to tell Dora where to go next. I believe this technology could further educate our younger minds before being set in front of a traditional keyboard.
The first "touch sensor" was developed in 1971 by a professor at the University of Kentucky named Dr. Sam Hurst. This sensor was called the "Elograph," and was patented by The University of Kentucky Research Foundation. The "Elograph" was not transparent like the touch screens we use today, but nevertheless, it was a significant mile-stone for this technology. The first true touch screen came on the scene in 1974, and was again developed by Dr.Hurst. In 1977, Elographics (Dr. Hursts Company) developed and patented five-wire resistive technology which remains the most popular touch screen technology in use today.
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