Soon, e-books to let you flip pages like mags

Virtual reality

Soon, e-books to let you flip pages like mags

Researchers have come up with a technology that will make reading on smartphones and tablet PCs easier than it is now.

“Smart E-book System”, developed by Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) headed by Howon Lee from the IT Convergence Research Institute, allows users of smartphones and tablet PCs to effortlessly flip through the pages of an e-book or cross-reference its contents, just as they would with paper-based books and magazines.

Unlike conventional displays and user interface technologies, where users’ finger movements are locked within the screen of display, the Smart E-book System recognizes finger touches made beyond the screen.

In other words, this algorithm-based conversion technology detects “touch and entry events” on the circumference of smartphones and tablet PCs and connects them with the “events” occurring within the screen, thereby preserving compatibility with traditional e-book interfaces while providing users with new functions.

Therefore, users can readily flip the pages of an e-book from the start-up screen without entering any function keys or touching the screen.

Skimming through the pages of a book, a feature that was previously unavailable with e-books, is also possible through 3D rendering of the contents on the pages being flipped.

A bookmark function allows users to conveniently go back and forth between pages of interest. In addition, the system has a "multi-touch" function as well as a smart capability of recognizing dragging time, finger pressure, and finger gestures.

“I hope that our technology will accelerate the wider use of e-books and contribute to Korea’s endeavours to lead the development of software application technology for mobile devices,” Howon Lee said.

Lee and his research team have filed 11 patents for the Smart E-book System in Korea and abroad.

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