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  • Wacom Bamboo Touchpad

    This is what i'll be using for my touch interface. It's got 4 programmable buttons (map them to itunes, firefox, etc), a scrool/zoom wheel, and the pen. This way i can use the pen to move the mouse so i don't have to reach over to the screen and I can use the pen for text input when needed for webbrowsing etc. No worrying about looking at a keyboard.

    http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Wacom...oductDetail.do

    $66 with in store pickup and the coupon listed. What do you all think?

  • #2
    I think the whole point of some other touch interface than an actual touchscreen, would be to take your eyes off the screen while using it, this won't do that. I have an A4 sized pad at home, and it is not as easy as it looks to use. I guess you could use it for writing though, but as your central controller for the GUI, i think you will be disappointed.
    Not doing carpc anymore

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    • #3
      That in a car as only means of control, no. Its too big and you will find it hard to use on the move. I fully intend to use a touchpad in my next install but its the small type like that found on a laptop and it will be moulded into either the centre console or door card. After two years of using a touchscreen I don't like it anymore than when I first started so I understand anyone not wanting one. The type your on about though IMHO is the wrong way to go about it.
      Visit my site V8 Scimitar

      SP13000, 300GB SATA HD, 1GB DDR. Opus 150, K301 screen, Cisco WIFI, AQmax GPS, RoadRunner and FreeDrive, Sony MEX-R5 head unit. 4 years installed and it just keeps running!

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      • #4
        I completely agree, touchscreens are not the ultimate control there is, i just haven't found anything to replace it completely yet, i primarily use my shuttleexpress for the stuff i use all the time, like changing tracks/selecting stuff got playlists, changing between music and video and gps screens and so on.
        Not doing carpc anymore

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        • #5
          Thanks for the input. I agree that this may not be the best, but i'll give it a shot and if not, return it. i have the ergonomic touchpad see here: http://www.ergonomictouchpad.com/erg...FTyKOAodOTW8Qg

          and while it's nice, i miss a simple text input system. obviously a keyboard wouldn't be too good and i find it not the easiest thing to try to tap on the onscreen keyboard. and i agree it's larger than i want, but i think it may fit inside my center console lid. however, i'm not too fond of the idea of having to use a pen to move around.

          what i'd love to be able to do is link my pda via sidewindow and have a type of program where the top half of the pda is a letter recognizer and the bottom is a touchpad

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          • #6
            Originally posted by v8 scimitar View Post
            That in a car as only means of control, no. Its too big and you will find it hard to use on the move. I fully intend to use a touchpad in my next install but its the small type like that found on a laptop and it will be moulded into either the centre console or door card. After two years of using a touchscreen I don't like it anymore than when I first started so I understand anyone not wanting one. The type your on about though IMHO is the wrong way to go about it.
            I agree 100% I've had a touchscreen in my car since july of last year, and it just is not what it is cracked up to be. I use my remote control for basicly everything.
            ATTENTION FELLOW CAR PC ENTHUSIASTS, POWER ACOUSTIC = CAR PC KRYPTONITE!!!! AVOID AT ALL COSTS!!!!

            To my adoring fans, No my Toyota's gas pedal didn't get stuck! Instead I saw you crossing the street and decided to floor it! Unfortunately, I MISSED!!!

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            • #7
              the advantage of a touchscreen is fast, one-touch input. you don't need to drag a pointer around then select it, you simply touch what you want to select. touchscreens are clearly the fastest and safest input method to use while driving.

              for a touchscreen to be truly useful the programs you use need to be "touchscreen friendly". like for example, iGuidance4.0 where it's large [spaced/spread out] on screen buttons allow you to change views, zoom levels, input/search for a destination, etc. in seconds.

              for other programs a touchscreen is not the best input method. a small touchpad or trackball is a more precise and practical input method, but is not very safe to use while driving. personally, my main carputer use is GPS, so a touchscreen is an absolute must for me, but I do plan to add a small [laptop size] touchpad as well. having BOTH and touchscreen AND a touchpad will give the best of both worlds IMO
              F150 Truckputer [1.0] (coming soon!)
              Fusion Carputer [2.0]
              Fusion Carputer [1.0]

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              • #8
                Well, for simple stuff like changing tracks, volume up down and such, touchscreens are definitely not the safest, since you have no feedback (buttont/countour) to press, you need to remember where on the screen the button is, for this a controller like the shuttleexpress is much safer, since you don't have to look at it to hit the buttons. Of course for inputting address and such into a gps system it doesn't work well, but you shouldn't really be doing that while driving anyway.
                Not doing carpc anymore

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                • #9
                  My main gripe about a touchscreen is I am right handed in a right-hand drive car. The screen has to be in the middle so I have to use my left hand. Add to that when driving your hand naturally bounces with the road and it ends up being inaccurate and awkward. Having tested a small touchpad I got on much better with it, mainly because at least my hand/arm was relaxed and supported. The ultimate IMHO would be totally accurate voice control but while I can get it to work pretty good in the home, its no where near good enough in the car. Maybe if I was willing to spend a lot of money on a quality mic array it would be but OEM stuff still has problems with this so I doubt it.
                  Obviously there is no completely right or wrong answer to this and people need to find what suits them the best. In the context of the OP question something that size is never going to work for anyone
                  Visit my site V8 Scimitar

                  SP13000, 300GB SATA HD, 1GB DDR. Opus 150, K301 screen, Cisco WIFI, AQmax GPS, RoadRunner and FreeDrive, Sony MEX-R5 head unit. 4 years installed and it just keeps running!

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                  • #10
                    I don't think there's one perfect tool for safe input, but rather a collection. Here's what I use:

                    1. Touchscreen
                    2. ccStick (i.e. rotary encoder)
                    3. VOICE!

                    I use Streetdeck for my front end which has very thorough voice commands. I use the rotary encoder to trigger the voice input (never have to look down at it, it's in the same spot as my car's OEM nav rotary control. My hand naturally rests there if using the arm rest). So, I use voice to go to different modules, pause, skip tracks, create a route, route me home, tell it to tell me the next nav direction, go to the equalizer, call home, and about 30 other things.

                    If I'm looking for artists to play, I use the ccStick to scroll the list (requires periodic glance, so not ultra safe, but better than holding down a button on the touchscreen). I can click the ccStick to select/ hit OK, and also use it to 'go back'. Between voice and ccStick, i'm barely even using the touchscreen at this point while driving.

                    Also, btw - Dragon Naturally speaking is great for normal PC control. With one command, I can open my OBD-II software of choice, select my template of 32 variables to log, and start logging.....or do a zillion other things.


                    EDIT: FYI - I'm using a cheap $15 mic that I picked up a few years ago, mounted by my sunroof controls where an Onstar mic would go. Key to good voice recognition is training the mic, and also having a finite set of commands available. For example: Dragon Naturally Speaking is the best voice recognition software available today, I could use it to navigate in Streetdeck. I don't, though, because Dragon is listening for anything like a command ("Call Home") to dictating text...it's constantly evaluating which one of the million things it can do, it should do. There is an option to put it into 'Command Mode' or 'Spell Mode' etc. but it's a bit of a hassle to move in and out of those modes. Streetdeck voice recognition doesn't have to work as hard: it just listens for commands, and there's only about 40 of them (that I've configured). So as long as the commands don't sound too much like each other, it's easy for it to figure out what I want. anyway...

                    Jst my 2 cents,
                    Per

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