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Innovative user interface adds value to wearable devices integration with location aware online portals

by Russel 2011-12-20 12:46


Geofence online portal location aware applicationsPersonal location services become more and more popular as people can go online and via an intuitive interface track the exact location of GPS enabled navigator or personal location aware device of your loved ones, or even their high-value assets. As the variety of the miniaturized Global Positioning Satellite tracking assisted and even cellular location-transmitting technology for consumer products and applications are introduced in any wearable location aware devices, from shoes to tiny clip-on devices. The GPS aware technologies today are embedded even in GPS athletic belts that enable athletes and their fans to track progress and performance during events like triathlons, to devices and footwear that can help track the whereabouts of Alzheimer's sufferers, or cell phone applications for social networking. Location based micro miniature GPS enabled beacons provide professional and amateur athletes and coaches with a portable solution worn on a belt that tracks and reports the location, elevation, time, and speed of runners, bikers, swimmers, kayakers, skiers, and other athletes. GPS as a mature technology originally designed for military and heavy industry, but  these days it is being reconfigured to become consumer-friendly and to make any type of the consumer goods trackable. On the other hand the evolution of online topographic maps and geography solutions available via the internet monitoring portals add the previously missing rich user interface to help tracks GPS enabled devices.

Garmin Geofencing Tracker ApplicationOnline portals deliver easy to use rich graphic applications that the average consumer can use right away without any difficulty to access information received from the wearable location aware devices. Accessible via the internet, mobile phones, personal communicators, and social networking portable devices which also often use cellular and  wireless services, and embed the GPS receiver, send to the portal the whereabouts of mobile users. Location based data is available for the current time as well as full history of GPS device location over long period of time. The real-time GPS location coordinates are rendered on a topographic map and in most cases the three dimensional maps are also available. The personal location tracking portal calculates major performance information including speed, bearing and altitude, longitude and latitude and even mobile device battery life. The topographic maps interact with the GPS navigation device to offer the geofencing technology and to deliver proactive alerts via text messaging or email to a guardian. Once the GPS device is moved over a pre-defined, customizable geographic area on the topographic map, the geofencing application delivers an alert, in case, for instance, your child leaves her school class at time when guardian knows she should be in class. Global Positioning Satellite tracking assisted technology brings safety to your loved ones.

Rich graphics topographic maps and location based geofencing applications work best when the personal location services portal is accessed from the mobile  communicator with larger screen, that is where popular devices like iPad work best. Innovative ideas help to enhance the convenience of user interface, making the use of virtual keyboard more convenient, as one example. TouchFire is a keyboard that sits atop the iPad's on-screen virtual keyboard and make the iPad easier to type on. The elevated keyboard is made of stretchy silicone and brings a full size natural keyboard experience to the user. On the surface the new elevated keyboard appears to be just a flexible film cover with an array of rigid plastic on the sides. Upon a closer look the silicon mask reveals small bumps on the underside of the keypad's silicone keys.

TouchFire silicon elevated keyboardThese bumps in fact provide typing fingers with the proper amount of resistance. Magnets on the sides and the bottom of the silicon keyboard lower layer adhere it to the magnetic portions of the face of the tablet computer, allowing it to sit right on top of the on-screen virtual keyboard without sliding around. The TouchFire silicon keyboard is extended with a non-slip layer on the bottom to ensure it stays in place. Typing with the new keyboard is fairly comfortable and as with any new user interface innovation it would take time for mobile communicator user community to make choices around this new silicon keyboard and decide on its usability while getting used to its look and feel. There are dozens of options available to iPad users, from cases with built-in keyboards to stand-alone keyboards that sit next to the iPad. Some technology experts are skeptical that the TouchFire will appeal to the masses, as it may not really seem very different from wide variety of wireless keyboards available for the tablet computers.

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