Synaptics touchpads get beta gesture tool


— 11:29 AM on January 4, 2010

Apple's touch interfaces tend to get all the media buzz, but Synaptics is no stranger to the concept of multi-touch gestures. The prolific touchpad maker has now released Scrybe, a new application that lets users draw symbols on their touchpads to open applications, search the web, and carry out more complex tasks.

Part of the Synaptics Gesture Suite 9.4, the Scrybe software is now available as an open beta. Folks with Synaptics touchpads can sign up here to get access. Scrybe runs on Windows 7, Vista, and XP, and it supports both single- and multi-touch touchpads (although as you might imagine, not all gestures work on older pads).

Once the Scrybe software is loaded up, Synaptics says users can do a three-finger tap or three-finger press to bring up the gesture input overlay. That overlay lets folks draw preset gestures like the question mark, which can "automatically launch the browser and perform an immediate directed search for the selected word or phrase." There's more, of course:

The personalized gesture suite can be used to run presentations or enjoy digital media, provide controls for play, pause, previous, and next commands and to advance through music lists, photos, and more. A user can also use the personalized gesture suite to rotate, crop, tag, rate, and enhance images, as well as perform Windows system functions -- all without ever lifting a hand from the TouchPad.

Synaptics provides a glimpse of the functionality in action in this video:

It looks like users can head into the control panel to create their own gestures, too. In any case, you'll find out more on the official Scrybe website, which includes some documentation and a support forum.

Incidentally, the announcement talks of a new SGS application programming interface that gives developers "a method to make use of all the latest technologies to deliver a richer application experience." We can't see anything on the website about that, though.

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