The NapkinPC gives great ideas an electronic birth

by James

Napkin PC

Our friends at Yanko have done it again. This time, taking the notion of creating great ideas from a napkin and turning it on its high tech head. Built on the latest breakthroughs in both e-ink and RF technology, designer Avery Hollerman has come up with the Napkin PC. It’s an ingenious idea.

Looking like it belongs more on the kitchen table, rather than the meeting room, the base station holds specially designed napkin e-paper and a set of six colored RF Pens. The pens record and transmit doodles to the base station which then gets processed and displayed on the napkin like e-ink paper. Trade ideas and have personal settings loaded with a simple signing of the artist’s name. There’s even a portable two pen unit for those impromptu idea pitches in the bar.

Napkin PC 2

The best part is that while the images and information are scanned digitally as you go, the paper can also be pinned up on a wall. This could make it the perfect interface for animators or storyboard artists in the movie, gaming and advertising business. And because the Napkin PC is collaborative in nature, the napkins are modular and can even be connected literally and digitally into one master design.

And the idea has the promise of being very green as there is no printing thanks to the e-paper, no batteries due to inductive power circuits, and no waste to throw away. Everything is recyclable as the plastic ePaper and the circuit layers can be peeled apart and melted down to be used again. In fact, the only part of the Napkin PC which would need replacing is the interface itself, which over time would simply wear out.

Now if they can only work out the engineering and pricing.

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