Pioneering Touch Interfaces with Microsoft Surface

Planet Telex is proud to be the second company in Colorado to purchase and receive a Microsoft Surface computer. If you have never heard of a Microsoft Surface you aren't alone, it is still a pretty cutting edge and niche technology. Essentially it is a table with a computer and projection monitor built in, so the surface of the table is interactive. This table computer can accept 64 individual inputs simultaneously (i.e. fingertips) and can even recognize objects and QR codes. It runs on the Windows operations system and has an SDK built on the .Net framework. The presentation layer can be either XNA or the new Microsoft Windows Presentation Foundation, most commonly known by Silverlight developers.

As an early adopter, Planet Telex will enjoy a week of training on Microsoft's campus, where they will be meeting with the employees working on the project and other early adopters. In addition to that they will get a chance to deep dive into the product's functionality and capabilities. This includes design workshops where interface approaches are discussed, since a single flat surface used by many people simultaneously is a new and different interface. The size and context even make it significantly different than designing for multi touch mobile devices.

The device has several commercial applications, most notably in the service and retail industry. Indeed, several Las Vegas nightclubs have already installed units with custom software. Cell phone retailers have also used them in stores to create interactive kiosks. The possibilities of integrated computers are only just now beginning to be explored, and Planet Telex believes that the Microsoft Surface is one of the first commercial devices in this new category of computers.

Microsoft Surface

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