The technology to project a keyboard onto any flat surface has come around the bend, and will soon be finding its way to all the nerdy (read: technologically obsessed) people you know who can afford to buy completely silly things. Using a series of lasers, the keyboard can be projected onto literally anything that is flat (which could theoretically include water). And using a set of integrated infrared sensors, the “keys” you press register with the computer the device is attached to, and are counted as having been pressed. Yes, you can finally live out the childhood dream of typing up your P and L statement while wading in a lake. Tom Sawyer’s dreams of a world without being bound to a desk have finally been realized.
However, there are some problems behind all of the hype that this technology is receiving of late. One of those problems is, how reliable is this technology, anyway? Just like anything new, there are bound to be a few bugs that the overly excited engineers who originally worked on this development simply did not catch during the beta stages of testing. With that being the case, is it possible to repair a piece of technology such as this one? And if it isn’t, how many of any given store’s sales will end in returns, as people’s virtual keys become virtually jammed down?
Another thing that we are going to need to contend with is the ultimate functionality of this device. While current models may be jammed into a pocket (or will fit handsomely into a large coat pocket), what about the devices we are going to use them with? The concept of an immensely portable keyboard is not a new one in the least. It has simply never caught on beyond its initial novelty. Where do people actually plan to type out entire reports on their iPhones, anyway? It’s hard to imagine an appropriate situation for this device.