They may have sucked
But I still want one of those laser keyboards, purely for the aesthetic value.
Despite roughly 15 years of innovation, virtual keyboards – like those found on a tablet or smartphone – are still truly hateful to write on, particularly when it comes to penning lengthy passages of text. Samsung's solution is something called SelfieType, which sees you type upon an invisible keyboard, with your phone's camera …
I've no idea how good they are, but geatbest sell them, and I've reliably used them for lots of stuff:
You'll presumably want to select GBP from the top drop down menu:
I'm forced to wonder how it copes with people keeping their fingers on the virtual home keys. Also, how does it cope with shift and control keys - and where's the delete and backspace?
Add the complete lack of tactile feedback that the average table generates and I can't really see this being any more than a gimmick.
Which is a shame 'cos it's a really nifty bit of a programming challenge.
Samsung are a bit late to the Game
So were Apple, didn't seem to hurt them tho' :) Sometimes it's not about being first but being better...
DISCLAIMER: I hate Apple with every fibre of my being - but they do <did?> make quality kit.
If they can make one that works, and that doesn't need to send everything off to a back end AI server to work if out.
On my phone I previously used the Dragon swype keyboard until they stopped supporting it. While looking for a replacement I found they all sent data back to servers to assist processing and this can include usernames and passwords! Got a little more paranoid from that and stopped using any except the built in Samsung keyboard which does swype but with poor accuracy compared dragon's.
So I really hope they can nail this down, I'd love to type at normal touch-type speeds on a phone.
A possibly better solution would be for the camera to recognize typing on any keyboard that happened to be in-front of it, from the most comfortable ergo-keyboard, to a role of A4 with qwerty printed on it. The user then has somewhere to aim for, and the scanning AI has some way of calibrating what the user thinks they are aiming for.
Maybe I'm just mad.
> And, so nobody could steal that keyboard, you could tether it to the device with a cable.
And if the recognition accuracy wasn't good enough then you could have a mode whereby the security cable was actually capable of carrying, say, USB data and passing the actual key presses to the device?
The hardware and software needed to get it working would be of sledgehammer/walnut proportions, you'd need to ensure correct alignment, your mobile battery life would take a hit and even then it would still be worse than a USB or bluetooth keyboard.
Doubtless there's some silicon valley VC spunking cash on a bunch of tech bros to get it working at this very moment!
These are mouse-sized keyboards that have 4 buttons (one for for each finger of one hand), and two or three thumb buttons. In use you press a combination (pattern) of the 4 buttons often followed by one of the thumb buttons to type a character. The 4 finger buttons give you 16 different combinations, and the three thumb buttons thus allow 48 different base characters (additional can be achieved with case lock or symbol lock). I have read that after some practice you can type faster and with fewer typos than with a full qwerty keyboard, and it is a physically small device that leaves one hand free.
The fact that you cannot do the equivalent of "hunt and peck" but have to follow a pretty steep learning curve to type anything sensible has meant that they are not popular - but certainly solve most of the same problems addressed by the "keyboardless" approach without the associated problems or complexity.
I remember these! Specifically, I remember some bloke claiming he could type with the device INSIDE HIS POCKET.
Well, he said he was typing. Imagine standing talking to someone with your right hand twitching in your pocket and a broad smile on your face. I can't imagine that ever being a good look...
As a former RSI sufferer, I wonder. (Switching from hunt/peck QWERTY on an 'ordinary' keyboard to touch-typing Dvorak on a split keyboard made the problem go away, though I've no idea which bit did the trick... took me about a month to get back to speed; in another month, I was considerably faster than I'd been to start.)
I just tried "touch-typing" on the table in front of me. Obviously, I don't have to hit as hard as I would on my mechanical keyboard. I could imagine a camera looking at my fingers and figuring out what I was 'typing'. Your mileage may indeed vary, the plural of anecdote is not data, and I've not tried it for years on end. But I _think_ it might actually be gentler on my wrists.
"Banging your fingers on a desk will cause RSI and make arthritis worse"
So don't bang your fingers. I doubt the force you hit the desk with plays any part in the keyboard working.
I am reminded of touch typists I've worked with, who learnt on typewriters. You sometimes had to politely point out that they didn't have to hammer computer keyboards to make them work.
How the hell are you supposed to type on it if you can't see it (or feel it)? Do you just "press" a "key" and see what character it types, and think "Oh, well, if the A key is there then the * should be about there?
Sod that, invent me an invisible mouse instead.
Don't see why not. I'm reminded of the Invisible Pink Unicorn (blessed be Her Hooves), which reflects the union of faith and reason. We know through faith that She's pink, but can demonstrate through reason that She's invisible (i.e., we can't see Her.)
I'm sure suitably faithful Apple users would be confident that the keyboard was shiny, even if they couldn't see it.
I've Tippexed the letters QWERTYUIOP on my fingernails, starting with Q on my left hand little finger, but I've no room for the rest. And Y to P look pretty ropy as I can't write very well with my left hand.
Plus I'm out of Tippex remover so I'm going to look like a Lexiconic-Punk on the way home.
I never used to have this much trouble when I wrote with a fountain pen. Hey, a pen with accelerometers and gyroscopes. Now we're getting somewhere.
All the kids who were raised with iPads and smartphones from the age of 2 and think a full travel IBM PC keyboard is an anachronism that belongs in a museum along with landlines and cassette tapes.
I've always though there was a potential market for this if it could be made to work really reliably. I think Samsung is nuts if they think people would use it without the laser projected keyboard, but the combination of that and the 3D scanners used for facial recognition should work fine in a pinch even for those of us who prefer proper keyboards. If I had some reason to enter a longer than normal email on my iPhone, I wouldn't mind setting it down on a flat surface and typing away on it for a couple minutes. I could do better like that than I could with the on screen keyboard since it is so small and uses only two thumbs.
The main audience for this are 13 and under right now, so there is still time to get it right!
While I could use such a virtual keybaord, the new generation actually types faster on the default on screen keybaord, because that's the one they learned to use. My wife, who is 55 years old but has been using a smartphone since the first iphone was invented, and rarely uses a computer, is far better (and feels a lot more comfortable) at typing on the smartphone than on the computer. Also, she prefers using internet on her ipad than on the computer. So, smartphone/tablet users of the future will surely find it useless. They will be fine with the on screen keyboard.
It's a heck of a lot of work, but just make the whole computer virtual. Put your Magic Leap on (hopefully you get a future version with better field of view), look at the table, ta da... fully working laptop or desktop computer.
And you get the same inability to touch type as with this invisible keyboard.
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