I like this, and we've even seen an apple stylus patent (and since I typed this, several other tablets have them at shows, Synaptics has new cap screens with pen capability, etc... patterns are well-established and --

, so easy to do, and coming back into vogue so we'd be on the cutting edge. ALSO: I have been thinking that the only issue with handwriting is corrections (not error rate, but fixing errors) and just played with some Windows 7 tablets. They have fixed it. Really want that input panel on my tablet. Some stuff to learn there: reduce clicks, like offer gestures for state changes such as 'correct' which switches to a character entry mode.



Value in standing, moving, difficult environments, or for populations (or cultures) with little or no experience with keyboard entry, or no standard keyboard for the data type...


a couple modes (virtual keyboard, natural character entry, short-hand character entry, word entry;

Make sure to mention finger-as-stylus inputs as an aside. Just emerging, but technically possible to do much the same with letter and handwriting recognition.

Interaction Details

generally as a contextual panel, on the screen

trace the path taken, in no-shit real time, then translate to words as fast as practical

mode switcher

Function buttons

Gestures for key functions; Win7 gesture to insert vs scroll then... etc.

Presentation Details

I think cursors are still suggested, for the reason they work on mouse, to express modality; are you on a link, or in a particular tool, you get a different cursor)


separate entry areas are generally no longer required technically so are not suggested unless there /is/ some specific technical reason... in which case, make sure that area works as well as possible...