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"Smart pen" takes writing to another level

by Breanna Lai, for KUAM News

Guam - The Pulse Smart Pen may seem like you're ordinary writing utensil with the added feature of a digital recorder - but this snazzy, compact device is more than meets the eye.  The device ensures the user never misses a word again as it simultaneously captures audio as you transcribe onto your Smart Paper.

Carla Torres of the University of Guam's GSAT Center explains how this device works, saying, "You really don't miss a word when you have this, it has a built in recorder, it has a microphone up here, an infrared camera on the bottom, so as you are writing the camera is capturing what you are writing and the microphone is picking up the audio."

The Pulse Pen benefits people who have difficulty listening to a teacher while copying notes off the board.  "And through the software program called LiveScribe Desktop, you are able to upload these files and it links what you have captured, what you have written with the audio that you have captured," he demonstrated.  "And so all a person has to do to get back to that lecture that day is tap on the notes and then you would hear the audio that was captured while you were writing notes."

But the pen cannot work on ordinary looseleaf paper; one must use the specified smart paper or smart notebooks and binders that have a menu of buttons to navigate the audio library.  "The Smart Paper is made up of about a gazillion dots the way the technology works is the camera captures your writing, or the representation against the dots, so it doesn't matter if you write chicken scratch it will still take that writing that you have done and create a file for it and then connect that audio," said Torres.

Like an Android cell phone, the pen also allows users to download fun and educational applications.  "You can also download applications just very much like an iPhone or an iTouch," Torres continued.  "You get onto the LiveScribe Desktop, which is connected to the Internet, and you can download applications, and so right now I have a translator application that I showed you, I wrote the word hello and when I tap on it, ni hao, it tells me how you say 'hello' in Mandarin, because that's the language I have selected."

The pen comes with a docking station for transferring info and charging.  This pen makes taking notes, attending lectures, and studying more accessible and than ever before.  Learning has never been so easy.

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