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Putting Buttons on the Visor
This thread has 5 replies. Displaying all posts.
Post 1 made on Tuesday September 12, 2000 at 17:37
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I have a Visor on order (free from DLJ direct with a $1000 deposit for 6 months) and the omniremote springboard plug in. Should be here in a week or so. While waiting, I was wondering how I would like it compared to my trusty 15-1994 with its buttons. Then this occured to me:

I have a Palm Pilot that I use every day. I protect the screen with a sheet of transparency paper used for making overheads. Why couldn't I find some clear, hard plastic buttons that could be glued onto the protective cover? In fact with the right piece of plastic, we could use the type that glows in the dark.

Of course, this will limit to some extent the variety of layouts you could use, but at the same time, you could regain the tactile feel to some extent of standard remotes. Moreover, you can change it simply by replacing the protective sheet.

If someone could develop this nicely, it would be a nice add on for the people selling Omniremote to provide to their customers.

Any thoughts?

OP | Post 2 made on Tuesday September 12, 2000 at 18:35
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I had thought of the same thing. Would be great for buttons such as vol/chan, etc. that would not change positions. Let us know what you come up with!

Greg :-)
OP | Post 3 made on Tuesday September 12, 2000 at 20:30
Historic Forum Post
I love this idea.

Have you seen ThumbType ([Link:])? It overlays the graffiti area with a physical keyboard. It can be ripped off and put back on.

Imagine ThumbType but with transport buttons and maybe a few others. There's enough room for quite a few buttons in the graffiti area.

Only trouble is that you couldn't use graffiti when the overlay was on. Of course, you'd also need a modified OmniRemote. Still, it's fun to think of the possibilities.

Peter Sharpe
OP | Post 4 made on Wednesday December 20, 2000 at 04:14
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I don't have a PDA yet so I'm lurking for now but I might have a idea for tactile "bumps" that also glow in the dark. Try using a toothpick to place a single dot of paint on the protective sheet for each button. You could use a braile (sp?) like pattern ie. one dot, a triangle, a square etc.
Can you photocopy or print a screen shot of your layout? That might help with bump placement.

Also, how do you get the overlay to stick?
OP | Post 5 made on Thursday December 21, 2000 at 13:46
David B.
Historic Forum Post
I teach design in a college department that includes several courses in product design. The wide variety of techniques we use to create prototypes of various products the students design has given me a few ideas on how one might create their own tactile buttons as a screen overlay.

Cast them. You'll need a simple negative form. Easily create negative buttons by drilling positive holes with a flat bottomed drill bit. You'll need a casting resin, but it could be sylicon gel or something similar you might find at a craft shop or hardware store. Whatever you use, be sure to coat the mold with a release agent... something the resin won't stick to. I've used spray PAM (vegetable oil) occasionally with good results. Soap might work too.

You can make indivudual buttons, and stick them onto your flat screen protector. You could make a whole array of buttons, already cast in place, with the screen protector applied over then buttons as they hardened in the mold.

Another thing you might try is to find some clear stick-on "feet" often sold at hardware stores and intended to be put on speakers and other hard objects to prevent them from sliding around or marring your shelves. Perhaps Radio Shack would be the place to look. I've seen square and round "feet", and in varuous sizes. They are already adhesive, and might be just the ticket.

I've got more ideas, if anyone is interested.

OP | Post 6 made on Saturday December 23, 2000 at 23:58
David B.
Historic Forum Post
I noticed at my local Staples store they were carrying PALM/Visor clear screen protectors. I don't remember what the price was, but they were designed to self stick to the screen (without adhesive, probably static) and would be perfectly sized, eliminating the need to make your own covers from overhead plastic.

Those would be a good base for stick-on tactile buttons. You get several in a pack, and each could have a different button layout, as previously suggested.


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