HOW DOES IT WORK? The Smartpen is a pen and a computer that allows users to write, record audio, record what is written, and access that information in a unique way. Covering paper with a pattern of dots makes each location unique and recognizable by a tiny camera mounted in the pen. If reviewing notes taken during a lecture, a student could find a diagram he had made, then command the pen to play back what had been said while he was drawing that diagram. Because of the special paper, the camera is able to read where it is on the page and find the corresponding spot in the audio, making it easy to play it back.
AN AUDIO-TACTILE DISPLAY: Using the smart pen with a raised line drawing kit allows visually impaired and blind people a chance to interact with the diagrams and pictures so vital to learning science and math concepts. With the Smartpen, students can print dots onto thin plastic sheets that are used with a pad that creates a raised line when written on with a pen. A teacher could explain a concept while writing the accompanying diagrams on the pad, and then hand the pad and smart pen to the student. The student would then be able to touch the pad, tap the pen in a spot, and in an on-demand fashion, listen to the teacher's explanation.
The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc., contributed to the information contained in the TV portion of this report.