CTX Virtual Technologies Laser Keyboard

By far one of the coolest technologies I have seen recently is the CTX Virtual Technologies Laser Keyboard and Keyfob.

The keyboard connects to tablets and phones via bluetooth. It projects an image of a QUERTY keyboard on the surface in front of it, and as the projected keys are tapped, a letter registers on the phone/tablet. 


Here is a video of the keyboard working via bluetooth with an iPhone 4:

In order to make the projection, CTX used a laser diode. Here is a link to a cool Youtube video explaining how laser diodes work. Laser diodes are also used in laser pointers, bar code readers (like at the grocery store) and cd/dvd burners. In a press release from the company, CTX created "specialized defractive optics" to shape the light in such a way to create the shapes in the keyboard. As far as I could find, this means that the laser is shot through a lens with a teeny tiny keyboard etched into it.

Also, I’ve deduced that the keyboard senses the finger movement using infrared light. It projects the light from the bottom of the unit. I figured this out when I was taking a photo of the keyboard. It was on, and a purple-ish/red-ish light was streaming from the bottom, only visable through the camera. Infrared light! In fact, you can see the red light in the still photo above.

It is available in both green and red.

I think this thing is soooo awesome and I bring it to school with me (it came with a carrying case) to type on my phone. I find it very reliable and easy to use, in setup and in operation. I give it 5/5 Very Happy Robots.

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