New Research finds that Digital Writing Improves Attention to Detail and Ability to Learn

Anoto, the leader in digital writing technology, today announced that a new book, The Design of Future Educational Interfaces (Routledge) summarises recent studies on how different types of computer input tools, can substantially undermine or stimulate people’s ability to think accurately. The book, just published in April, was written by an independent non-profit organisation and evaluates how different computer interfaces influence students’ performance.

Studies highlighted in the book show that using a digital pen interface stimulates people to write more spatial content (diagrams, symbols), compared with either a keyboard or a non-digital pen. This leads to a 9 – 38 percent improvement in students’ ability to produce ideas, solve problems correctly, and make accurate inferences about information. The studies involve students of different ages and ability levels, and include maths, science and everyday reasoning tasks. The research reveals the advantages of using a digital pen as a “thinking tool” for many computer tasks, compared with traditional keyboard-and-mouse interfaces.

The book was written by Sharon Oviatt, an international authority on computer interface design and human cognition. Oviatt says, “Digital pens are able to support a flow of communication involving all types of representation, including diagrams, symbols, numbers and words – and shifting fluidly among them while we think. With digital pen and paper, the Leonardo da Vinci in all of us is able to construct spatial content, which is the foundation of human cognition and a prerequisite for creative work.”

The Anoto Live™ pen looks, feels and writes like a normal ballpoint pen. However, it contains an infrared camera, an advanced image microprocessor and a mobile communications device for wireless connection. Using a digital pen on a surface covered with the Anoto Live™ dot pattern, you can capture, store and then securely send the handwriting, enabling you to easily convert ink to digital data – immediately.

“Oviatt’s research points to the ‘power of the pen’ and the fact that Anoto Live™ digital writing is not only easy to use for capturing and managing all kinds of data, it also is a low-load interface that is performance enhancing” said Stein Revelsby, CEO of Anoto Group AB. “Our solutions are widely implemented across education, field services, healthcare, facilities, oil and gas and many other industries around the world, and have transformed handwriting into the digital age.”

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