the keyboard on the competition

Fabien fleutot+openmoko at
Thu Jun 28 11:24:47 CEST 2007

On 6/28/07, Robin Paulson <robin.paulson at> wrote:
> someone on this list had a similar idea for enlarging number keys i
> think, they would appear or resize depending on context iirc?

That's shiny and beautiful, but of limited use: the key becomes bigger
*after* it's been hit, too late to help the user aiming. Well, actually it's
still got a practical use: it helps notice when one hits the wrong key (I
guess no human being could type without looking at the keyboard on an

A more interesting track would be some sort of transparent full-screen input
device: something that lets you see your text, but also lets you use the
whole touch surface to type more accurately. Besides, that would be one of
the extremely few cases where transparency effects improve usability instead
of hurting it :)

If you want to go further, you can combine fullscreen-ness with motions,
instead of simply touches, thus augmenting the number of immediately
accessible symbols, or reducing the required level of accuracy. There was a
startup, a couple of years ago, which produced a very cool (soft or hard)
input device, based on a 3x3 grid, which was fast, mnemotechnically friendly
and easy to implement. Unfortunately, they're out of business, I can't
remember their name and they aren't listed on the openmoko wiki. If anyone
has a better memory...
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