Mp3Car.com has designed a USB interface for the Immersion TouchSense PR-1000 programmable rotary encoder. This encoder has a lot of potential to improve car computing safety and the user experience. It is electromechanical controlled so that it can provide various sensations such as detents, stops, hills, and varying levels of friction or force enabling users to “feel” their way around car computer applications.
Samples car computer applications:
• Scroll through a playlist with minor “dents” and a more forceful “hill” when reach end of list and start at top again. Push knob in to play song or select.
• Volume control with light “dents” so you can do things like turn the volume up or down “just a notch” with great accuracy
• Scroll through radio presets with firm “dents” so that you don’t accidentally pass over stations because the knob turned too easily
• Zooming on navigation map with hard stop “barriers” when zoomed all the way in or all the way out
• Keyboard to enter navigation address – Scroll across keyboard with slight “hills” in between keys to help you feel around, when on top of correct letter, push to select.
• Entire encoder is 100% software configurable and dynamic
• Support for mutable “scenes” allows different functionally within the same application – use one knob for everything!
• USB bus powered
• Power LED
• Standby power friendly
What the product can do:
Barrier. Sensation of hitting a hard stop. Barrier effects restrict the user’s motion and are useful for indicating first and last items, minimum and maximum, or the edge of an area.
Compound. Two or more effects such as barriers and detents. A compound effect, like small detents with a deeper center detent and barriers on both sides, would be appropriate for a balance control, for example. Compound effects help designers closely match tactile sensations to operational steps, which can enhance usability.
Constant Force. Continuous force independent of position. Constant force can be used to simulate dynamics such as gravity, friction, or momentum.
Detent. Notches associated with selection position. Used to mark fine or coarse increments or selections, detents can be customized in size, shape, and number to suit context-sensitive requirements.
Hill. A plateau style of wide detent. A hill effect could be used for menu wraparound, letting the user know they have moved from last to first menu item. A hill can also be used to indicate a return from a submenu back to the main menu or to signal the crossing of a boundary.
There is currently no software support for this so we will be giving away encoders to the developers of the major software front ends, just ask me and we'll send you one. We have a driver and a development environment is available.
We expect to have a retail product very shortly. Here's a teaser:
http://progressive.playstream.com/im...echcloseup.swf - Video - Fast forward to about 40% to see PR-1000