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Old Jan 27, 2010, 06:41 PM   #1
mpgviolin
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[Merged] The iPad and its lack of a stylus

If anyone has any experience with the SDK, I'm wondering if a stylus might be used for more precise data entry in certain apps?
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Old Jan 27, 2010, 06:49 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by mpgviolin View Post
If anyone has any experience with the SDK, I'm wondering if a stylus might be used for more precise data entry in certain apps?
There are a few styli for iPhones that should work fine for the iPad.

I'd love to spend a few hours with the Brushes app and a capacitive stylus.
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Old Jan 27, 2010, 06:51 PM   #3
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If anyone has any experience with the SDK, I'm wondering if a stylus might be used for more precise data entry in certain apps?

If you don't want pressure sensitive - just get a capacative stylus 3rd party - it'll work fine. If you want pressure sensing - you'll have to wait for a 3rd party on this.
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Old Jan 31, 2010, 10:08 AM   #4
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On the non-existent iPad stylus

I totally agree with doing away with stylus for routine usage. But I do hope Apple has kept the screen somewhat optimal for stylus too, for those who want to use one for whatever it is. In their web video, SVP of hardware mentions at one point that they have put more than a thousand sensors for touch recognition (3/4th into the video). May be it is my naiveté, but that sounds too low — a grid of 30x40 sensors?
In other words, say we use a third party (compatible) stylus with a fine tip, how smooth can lines, curves or writing be rendered? will it look like curves or something drawn with etch-a-sketch knobs?
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Old Jan 31, 2010, 01:37 PM   #5
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Stylus . . . even Palm abandoned that on their mobile device OSs.
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Old Jan 31, 2010, 01:43 PM   #6
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A stylus should not be required, but it should be there (specially the place where to store one).

If it had a stylus one would hope for good handwriting recognition with a software update.
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Old Jan 31, 2010, 01:45 PM   #7
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Capacitive screens don't work in such a way that 100 sensors would be a small number, as I understand it. It's not 1000 binary switches, so to speak. The iPhone does well in terms of screen drawing accuracy, I expect the iPad will, too. You can get a stylus for the iPhone which would work on the iPad for $5-15 depending on the brand, quality, seller, etc.
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Old Jan 31, 2010, 01:49 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by nateharr View Post
There are a few styli for iPhones that should work fine for the iPad.

I'd love to spend a few hours with the Brushes app and a capacitive stylus.
Here is a gallery that Ten One Design has posted! Enjoy!!

http://tenonedesign.com/gallery

I'm still amazed at what can be done with a small screen and a stylus. My DD tried this morning and was frustrated - but in typical teenage fashion, it was with about 5 minutes of effort! LOL!! I'm pretty sure the bigger space of the pad will cure some of her frustrations.
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Old Jan 31, 2010, 02:27 PM   #9
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Stylus . . . even Palm abandoned that on their mobile device OSs.
I think it's arguable that a stylus makes more sense on a larger device. The problem with most stylus-based devices is that they were engineered to replace the mouse. Multi-touch makes a lot more sense for navigation and interaction, but I still think there's a lot of room for incorporating a stylus. Quickly sketching out diagrams, formulas and other notes in class for example seem like one particularly useful example. Imagine how cool it would be to take notes on a never-ending sheet of paper. Also, marking-up and annotating e-books would be very useful.

I realize that there's going to be 3rd party apps for this kind of thing, but it's inherently different than if the concept was supported and engineered from the start with this functionality designed into the core OS of the device. Also, I agree that having a physical repository for a stylus built in would've been very handy.
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Old Jan 31, 2010, 04:11 PM   #10
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I think a stylus would be good for a few specialized aspects of the ipad, mainly drawing/painting apps, and apps for taking notes that have handwriting recognition. A stylus definitely is not good for generally navigating around the ipad though, where using your finger is best.

I wonder though if there are styluses that have finer point tips than the ones I usually see being sold? I would like a stylus that has a tip closer to that of a regular pen, so I could actually write out handwritten notes fairly easily and draw pictures with a pretty high degree of accuracy. Anyone know if fine tip styluses for the iphone exist now??
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Old Jan 31, 2010, 04:14 PM   #11
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The stylus would be great for Newton style text input (inkwell) and drawing programs like Sketch book pro and Brushes.


I hope someone makes app that will allow us to use the iPad as a wacom cintiq on a mac.
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Old Feb 1, 2010, 07:25 AM   #12
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Use the negative end of a AAA or AA battery.

There you go. Almost free stylus.
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Old Feb 1, 2010, 09:29 AM   #13
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I think a stylus would be good for a few specialized aspects of the ipad, mainly drawing/painting apps, and apps for taking notes that have handwriting recognition. A stylus definitely is not good for generally navigating around the ipad though, where using your finger is best.

I wonder though if there are styluses that have finer point tips than the ones I usually see being sold? I would like a stylus that has a tip closer to that of a regular pen, so I could actually write out handwritten notes fairly easily and draw pictures with a pretty high degree of accuracy. Anyone know if fine tip styluses for the iphone exist now??
As a current Wacom Penabled Tablet PC user I know this is the only feature I'm going to miss when I switch. I sure hope that someone comes up with a way of creating a precision stylus for the pad. If that happens the pad will be my tablet dream realised completely.

I won't cry if it proves impossible but I will probably let out a small sigh.
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 10:43 AM   #14
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Why the iPad needs a stylus

For note taking.

This comes in particularly handy for college students. For one reason because I'm not sure that the keyboard will be the biggest hit. But mainly because, myself being an engineer, I know that i couldn't take notes in any of my classes on a computer. I need to write equations, and draw pictures, and all sorts of things that can't be done with a keyboard.

But the issue becomes the fact that the iPad needs to recognize the difference between the stylus and your hand, so it's not an issue when your hands rest on the "page". This is why apple needs to come up with the solution.


Thoughts?
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 10:45 AM   #15
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There is already stylus's Avalible for the iPhone screen google is your friend
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 10:47 AM   #16
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There will be an app for that I'm sure, no worries.
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 10:50 AM   #17
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Yeah I've heard there is a stylus, but I think his point is that Apple needs to make one on their own for the device, and I'd agree with that. With a surface as large as the iPad will have, it would really be silly not to have something of that nature. I'd love it just to be able to doodle/sketch sometimes. The only issue might be the touch screen - I'm not sure if it will be sensitive enough to pick up on things that specific since it is, after all, built for fingers.
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 10:54 AM   #18
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The screen is sensitive enough. I don't think you'll have pressure sensitivity like a Wacom tablet, but as far as line width, etc. that can always be adjusted in the app.

I also don't need to pay $29.99 for a stylus with an Apple logo on it. 3rd party solutions will be fine. (Although I would if it were out there )
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 10:55 AM   #19
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There are plenty of Windows and Linux tablets out there that use styluses. I would recommend that solution for you. If you prefer Mac, then look into a modBook as they are tablets and I assume use a stylus.

A stylus is an unnecessary component for the engineering of the multitouch surface of the iPad and won't be coming.
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 10:59 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roland.g View Post
A stylus is an unnecessary component for the engineering of the multitouch surface of the iPad and won't be coming.
It won't be coming from Apple but they already exist for the iPhone and the screen technology is the same.

For navigating an OS, it's not necessary in this environment. For note taking, marking up PDFs, sketching, etc. it's essential and I'm looking forward to doing all of that on my iPad.
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 10:59 AM   #21
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The screen is sensitive enough. I don't think you'll have pressure sensitivity like a Wacom tablet, but as far as line width, etc. that can always be adjusted in the app.

I also don't need to pay $29.99 for a stylus with an Apple logo on it. 3rd party solutions will be fine. (Although I would if it were out there )
Poor Man's Stylus. Take the negative end of a AAA or AA battery and use that. Works great on the iphone when I've got my ski gloves on.


As for note-taking. I've got a business associate who has had a Toshiba tablet PC with a Note taking app on it. It of course has a stylus. He used it for the first 24 hours when he was showing it off to me. Never seen him use it since.
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 11:00 AM   #22
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The screen is sensitive enough. I don't think you'll have pressure sensitivity like a Wacom tablet, but as far as line width, etc. that can always be adjusted in the app.

I also don't need to pay $29.99 for a stylus with an Apple logo on it. 3rd party solutions will be fine. (Although I would if it were out there )
True the apple logo is irrelevant, but I was thinking that an Apple version could potentially work better than someone else's since it would be built by the same people.

Quote:
A stylus is an unnecessary component for the engineering of the multitouch surface of the iPad and won't be coming.
What do you mean unnecessary for the engineering of the multitouch? A stylus works better than a finger. If you want to write down a note, or draw, a stylus would be much more capable. You might be right that it's not coming, but I don't see why it would be unnecessary. I mean, it's not necessary I guess in some technical sense, but then neither is an iPad.
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 11:02 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by lordhamster View Post
Poor Man's Stylus. Take the negative end of a AAA or AA battery and use that. Works great on the iphone when I've got my ski gloves on.


As for note-taking. I've got a business associate who has had a Toshiba tablet PC with a Note taking app on it. It of course has a stylus. He used it for the first 24 hours when he was showing it off to me. Never seen him use it since.
Never tried the battery trick...I'll have to remember that one.

My iPad will sit inside it's nice leather Apple case (or better 3rd party alternative) and take the place of the yellow ream of notebook paper in a binder I take with me to all of my meetings. It's much more compact than a laptop and the accessibility of the applications is better. Can't wait.
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 11:12 AM   #24
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What do you mean unnecessary for the engineering of the multitouch? A stylus works better than a finger. If you want to write down a note, or draw, a stylus would be much more capable. You might be right that it's not coming, but I don't see why it would be unnecessary. I mean, it's not necessary I guess in some technical sense, but then neither is an iPad.
I mean that the capacitive sensors of the iPad multitouch screen are designed for finger inputs and such. Clicking in general areas, pinching, zooming, rotating, typing, etc. They are not designed for the precise input that drawing may take on. That's not to say they can't accept it in a fashion somewhere between rudimentary and even doable, but that is not their ultimate design, so a 3rd party stylus and app may work to get the job done, but Apple won't be releasing it because it isn't within the framework of their major intended uses and engineering design. If a 3rd party makes a successful drawing, sketching, or notetakeing app that works with or without a stylus and people find it acceptable, then that's just a bonus for the 30% Apple makes out of the app. Get it.
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 11:15 AM   #25
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My iPad will sit inside it's nice leather Apple case (or better 3rd party alternative) and take the place of the yellow ream of notebook paper in a binder I take with me to all of my meetings. It's much more compact than a laptop and the accessibility of the applications is better. Can't wait.
Yes, I'd like it for note taking as well in meetings and such. I'd also like to use it to doodle maybe while I'm watching TV or just out and about, eating lunch perhaps, or something like that. This has the potential to be my sketchbook and notepad all in one, which would be especially nice because my sketchbook is rather bulky. That's mostly why I was concerned about the sensitivity ... I know it won't match my Wacom but I'd like to be able to make drawings that don't look like they were drawn by a 5 year old.

Quote:
Originally Posted by roland.g View Post
I mean that the capacitive sensors of the iPad multitouch screen are designed for finger inputs and such. Clicking in general areas, pinching, zooming, rotating, typing, etc. They are not designed for the precise input that drawing may take on. That's not to say they can't accept it in a fashion somewhere between rudimentary and even doable, but that is not their ultimate design, so a 3rd party stylus and app may work to get the job done, but Apple won't be releasing it because it isn't within the framework of their major intended uses and engineering design. If a 3rd party makes a successful drawing, sketching, or notetakeing app that works with or without a stylus and people find it acceptable, then that's just a bonus for the 30% Apple makes out of the app. Get it.
Yes, I understand it's intended mostly for a finger and all that. What I'm saying is I think they would benefit from making it one of their intended uses, if only a minor one. If they made an app specifically for it and a stylus for that app, I think a lot of people would buy it and they'd make extra money from it. But again you may very well be right that they aren't going to do that. I just would like it if they would. But as long as there is a 3rd party app/stylus that does that job, I'll be happy.

Last edited by Mitthrawnuruodo; Feb 2, 2010 at 11:28 AM. Reason: Merging, please use MULTIQUOTE and/or EDIT...
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