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Sensel, a Mountain View, California-based start-up disclosed last month the Morph, a super sensitive multi-touch trackpad that can be used as PC keyboard, a piano keyboard, a game pad, and even a support on which you can draw or paint and have your work duplicated by a computer software.
The new trackpad is very similar to Apple’s recently released device for MacBooks, because it has sensors that can measure how hard or soft you are pressing it. But Sensel’s version has also a customizable system of “overlays” that can help the device shape shift and gain extra functionality.
We first learned about Sensel’s input device last month when the company launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund the project. Its initial goal was $60,000, but after one month they were able to collect more than $100.000.
Sensel’s extended goal is to reach $250,000, so backers who would support the project would receive a cool-looking sleeve for the Morph and its overlays.
Sensel’s Morph is no larger than a iPad Mini and is equipped with 20,000 sensors that can detect even the slightest stroke of a brush. The data is instantly transferred to a computer or tablet as soon as the Morph is connected to the devices. Usually, Sensel’s Morph gets connected to a computer wirelessly but it also equipped with a cable especially for developers. Tech experts noted, however, a slight delay when the Morph was connected to an iPad via Bluetooth.
The device currently has seven overlays. There is also an eighth one which would be designed and approved by the public. Nevertheless, Sensel’s Morph is an open project and everyone can improve it with new overlays, functions, and apps.
Overlays are 3-D printed covers that are placed on the pad. The overlays do not lower the device’s sensitivity to pressure. The piano overlay can turn the input device into a full-fledged piano keyboard that can play notes louder if you press harder. The computer keyboard overlay is also very easy to use.
For people who paint, Sensel plans to improve the pad and make it reject the signal triggered by the user’s hand resting on its surface so it can only record the strokes of the paintbrush.
This means that Sensel’ Morph may turn into a powerful tool for artists, video game enthusiasts, musicians, and programmers. And the features and functions may constantly improve.
The company announced that the device is already ready to go, so backers can pre-order it for $249 and receive three overlays of their choice.
Image Source: Kickstarter