LONDON – A flexible tablet design created by Queens University in collaboration with Intel Labs and Plastic Logic features innovative control features, the partners said.
The "PaperTab" tablet includes a flexible10.7-inch plastic display developed by Plastic Logic (Cambridge, England). The tablet is powered by a Core i5 processor. Early prototypes appear to be based on Plastic Logic's black and white monochrome display.
The PaperTab project was developed at the Human Media Lab at Queen's University and Plastic Logic and includes different use and control schemes based on the flexibility of the display. For example, PaperTab allows users to send a photo simply by tapping one PaperTab showing a draft email with another PaperTab showing a photo. The photo is then automatically attached to the draft email. The email is sent either by placing the PaperTab in an out tray, or by bending the top corner of the display.
Similarly, a larger drawing or display surface is created by placing two or more PaperTabs side by side. PaperTab thus emulates the handling of multiple sheets of paper by combining thin-film display, thin-film input and computing technologies.
Screen icons operate in a manner similar to a computer desktop. When picked up or touched a PaperTab switches back to a full screen page view, just like opening a window on a computer. "Using several PaperTabs makes it much easier to work with multiple documents," said Roel Vertegaal, director of the Human Media Lab at Queen's University.
Click on image to enlarge.
Examples of PaperTabs developed by Queen's University and Plastic Logic.
Wow, this sounds like a fantastic innovation. It has its limitations sure, but the prototype has given quite a good start. It is not as heavy-duty as scanner, and it just looks cool. But I see it as an “on the go” scanner. I do not see its use in a full-fledged office. On the other hand, our smartphones can also take picture of a document and send it as attachment. I guess this PaperTab simply gives better resolution. Maybe in the future its developer, Plastic Logic, will tell us better benefits of this product. - http://www.hammerplastics.com
I can forsee a time when we will have multiple sheets of paper. Simply using a pencil, we can write things on them, fold them into an envelope and for 50 cents - mail it to anywhere in the world, regardless of the local power supply or network coverage.
All joking aside, I love this advancement in technology, but do we have to use two of these to send an email with an attachment? No broken screens, but how dust proof or water resistant are they?
I'm certain by the time these hit the market, a raft of difficult questions would have been asked and answered.
Very nice job - I want one
I've read about flexible display technology off and on for quite a while, but I think this particular one is farther along than I've seen to date. I'd agree with you, Selinz, that using something like this to make our current devices more rugged would be a good application too.
I'm just as intrigued by the idea of using the flexible electronics technology to make a flexible sheet of sensors, as the describe on their web site.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.