Webloggers upload digital doodles using smart pens

07/01/2004

Smart pens have become the latest way to post messages to online diaries, or weblogs, while on the move.

The Nokia Digital Pen and Sony Ericsson's Chatpen both let users turn ordinary scribbles and doodles into digital images that can be sent via email or multimedia messaging service (MMS). One web logger has put together computer code to automatically convert these doodles into weblog postings.

The smart pens come with a pad of paper covered with grid lines. A sensor underneath the nib of the pen uses the grid to record its movement and convert the scribbled messages into digital pictures.

Ticking a box at the front of the pad tells the pen to connect via the short range radio standard Bluetooth to a compatible mobile phone in order to send the message via MMS. The phone could also be set to send the doodle to another phone or to email it to a computer.

The underlying technology was developed by a Swedish company called Anoto and is used in a number of different digital pens. Using the pens to create weblog entries while mobile has been dubbed "handwritten moblogging".

Mobile blogging has grown in popularity with the introduction of more advanced mobile phones and handheld computers. Phones incorporating tiny digital cameras are being used by out-and-about bloggers to add photos and video clips to their sites.

Source: NewScientist.com news service