One day, perhaps in the not so distant future, we will be able to interact with tablets, phones or computers using a normal old sheet of paper.
Purdue University engineers in the US have created a print job through which it is possible to coat paper or cardboard with "highly fluorinated molecules". This allows for a dust-proof, oily and water-repellent coated paper, which means that multiple layers of circuits can be printed on the paper without smudging the ink. According to a paper published by the engineers on Nano Energy , these “areas triboelectric“Are therefore able to realize“ self-powered Bluetooth wireless communications ”. Interactive paper printed and coated in this way it does not require external batteries as it generates electricity from contact with the user's finger.
How does the interactive map work? Here are some videos
In the first video, Purdue engineers have a paper keyboard treated with the aforementioned “omniphobic” coating. The paper keyboard is then sprinkled with a neon green solution.
In the second video, a person uses a keypad made of paper for actually type on a laptop instead of a keyboard!
In a third video , the Purdue team printed a real interface on the back of a piece of paper. In the video, someone controls the audio playback by dragging their finger along the volume bar and moving from one point to another in the song.
While the technology itself is quite interesting, another interesting aspect is that because it works on paper and cardboard, it would be relatively inexpensive, flexible and quick to make. This makes it a good candidate for things like smart packaging.
A thousand possible applications
Imagine that this technology facilitates user interaction with food packaging to check if the food is safe to consume. Or even with large packaging, to allow users to sign the package that arrives at home by simply dragging their finger on the box to identify themselves correctly.