Thursday, May 27, 2010

Elo Continues to Innovate

Elo TouchSystems (booth 1207) is demonstrating at least two interesting touch-related innovations. The first is a result of Elo’s acquisition of Sensitive Object in January of this year. The demo of one of Sensitive Object’s capabilities consists of a large sheet of acrylic with two acoustic sensors clamped to the sheet in arbitrary locations, as shown in the photo above. The sensors are connected to a small control box. Four arbitrary spots are selected on the acrylic sheet. Each spot is tapped rapidly with a finger until the control box sounds a long tone. the four spots are “calibrated”, only those four spots respond to touch; touches anywhere else on the acrylic sheet are ignored. This is a simple illustration of how Sensitive Object’s “ReverSys” technology uses stored waveforms of acoustic signatures to identify touches at a specific location. technology isn’t restricted to use on flat surfaces; it also works on multi-dimensional objects.

The second demo is of a surface acoustic wave (SAW) monitor with zero-bezel (edge-to-edge glass) design. SAW normally has a set of reflectors around the border of the screen that prevents a bezel-less configuration. Elo has figured out how to locate the reflectors (and the piezo transducers) on the back of the glass, leaving the front of the glass as an entirely flat surface. The trick is in shaping the edge of the glass so that the acoustic waves are guided from the back of the glass around to the top surface. The current demonstration product is single-touch; Elo indicated that dual-touch might be possible in the future. --Geoff Walker, NextWindow

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