With the problem of handwriting text recognition pretty much solved [by tiny keyboards — ed.] researchers are now turning to other, more complex handwritten symbols and designs. The latest effort is coming from Andries van Dam of Brown University, and funded by Microsoft:
At the Microsoft Center for Research on Pen-Centric Computing, Brown students and faculty will research new ways to use computers that don’t involve keyboards. Researchers will focus on getting computers to understand and process complex written handwriting — such as chemistry equations and artistic sketches.
This will be first research center in the country focused on pen-centric computer research, according to the university.
“In some cases the pen is mightier than the keyboard,” said Andries van Dam, vice president for research at Brown. Van Dam, a member of Microsoft Research’s technical advisory board, will be the director of Brown’s new computer center…
The center was unveiled yesterday at a news conference at Brown, where the school’s existing research in pen-based computing was on display…
Some of Brown’s undergraduate and graduate students as well as computer science professors demonstrated a computer program that can turn a sketch of a molecule on a tablet personal computer into a three-dimensional, moving model.
Someday, maybe not far from now, technology like this will be able to interpret doctor’s notes.
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