Anoto penPresenter – do you want one enough?
In my role, I do a lot of presentations, and a lot of whiteboarding. Sometimes I do webex presentations, where whiteboarding isn’t really an option, and drawing with your mouse isn’t either.
Now – I had seen a few digital pens on the market, but I wanted one that would be wireless, easy to carry, and actually update the screen in real-time. Now it seems that product is finally here. Take a look at this:
So – finally! Looks great. At a simple level, you can print or buy a ‘plain’ sheet of paper, and then draw on it. As you draw, the pen movements are transmitted live to the screen. So you can draw a block diagram, a flow diagram, etc – show and share it in real-time, and then print it off for minutes. Actually, that’s all I really want it for.
The really cool feature, that I probably wouldn’t use, is that you can print off the presentation, and then draw on the printout. The pen automatically works out the page, and position on the page, and the drawing appears on the slide in real-time. Really impressive!
OK – so what are the disadvantages?
1. It’s around £225-300.
2. It’s new – no-one stocks it yet.
3. Only OKI 600dpi Laser printers are certified to work with it. Otherwise, you can try your own printer, as long as:
a. It’s Laser
b. It’s 600dpi – or a multiple (1200,1800,2400)
c. It supports Postscript 3.
So – that’s 4 ‘no’s for my Canon Inkjet then. You can see why they need it though – to print the ultra-fine pattern that the pen uses to detect where it is on the page.
So… perhaps I could buy a pad of the Anoto paper instead (comments?) – or even find someone with a 600dpi laser, and print off enough to keep me going for a while! As for the price… it’s a luxury, but possibly worthwhile if it really helps.
Alternatives? A simple digitiser tablet for £50; but I don’t have the space to carry one around constantly. Or that corner-mounted virtual whiteboard-on-projector system, which again, required a sensor on the wall, sensors on the pens, and a huge power cable to the wall sensor (hopeless!).
For now, I’ll wait and see…