SMART - Bringing touch to education system?

SMART Table - Touch... Learn... Together.

SMART introduces first interactive table for primary students new tables enables small group learning and collaboration learning center, a ground-breaking learning display designed specifically for preschool to sixth grade (ages 4 to 11) students. The new product is a brightly colored table with a touch-sensitive surface where groups of students can simultaneously interact with digital content. Working together to complete interactive lessons, play educational games and solve problems, students think the interactive learning center is fun and easy to use, and their teachers find it educational. For example, a teacher can introduce a concept on an interactive whiteboard and then ask students in small groups to explore it further on a SMART Table.

The SMART Table contains a customized PC and a projection system that are turned on with a single button. It has a built-in 27" (69-cm) screen (on the diagonal) that can read simultaneous input from an unlimited number of fingers or pen tools. At 29" (73 cm) wide and 25" (65 cm) high, the SMART Table is ideal for small groups to work around without crowding. It ships with a standard set of interactive learning applications, interactive lesson activities and educational games. Independent software and content developers have already recognized the potential of the SMART Table and are creating additional content for it, which will be available with the product in spring 2009 for $8,000 USD.

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this is looking cool. exactly what multi-touch is about:
- collaboration
- helping people who are not used to working with a mouse
- hardware that must be tough


Hmm, I could build one twice the size for half the price though!

This is exactly the purpose of my interest in multitouch… already realized. :-(
Teaching with fun at children I think is the best application of multitouch.

$8,000 is to much, the MS Surface is not to far from that price. I hope to sell mine for around $3,000 or less, making it much more affordable for everyone, and twice as big as the smart table. I’d also like to make all the schematics and software available on here so other people could build and sell their own if they would want, keeping the open source theme with the chance of some profit. I guess it depends on whats more important to you, profit or help for the open community, I prefer both.

Awesome...we have SMARTboards at school, nice to see they are going further with their (multi)touch technologies.

i think the table’s price is based upon the software, the stability of the table’s tracking and what ‘the customer’ can do with it.

what should children do with a 50” touch table? they are simply too small to reach certain regions.

anyway, i don’t think that someone will buy a selfmade table just for the purpose of owning one. it’s about what you can do with it. and i don’t think that watching photographs is enough.

I was able to play with this today at the FETC conference today. My impressions:
- There was a little bit of lag and an overall slow feeling to it.
- The table is constructed nicely… very solid smile
- Most likely an FTIR table as it took force to register touch events (brushing your finger didn’t work).
- It had a canopy over it… looked odd. I’m assuming this was to shield it from IR light from the convention lights.
- Overall it was ok… I’ve seen more impressive stuff on here though smile

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