KAIST page flip demo could revolutionize digital page flipping

The title might sound like a mockery, but it really isn’t. Some of the things that make life easier are things that sound boring on paper, but the page flipping demo from the KAIST Institute of Information Technology Convergence is something I really want to have in the apps I use for large documents. Basically it’s a new system for flipping digital pages that has a lot in common with the way actual paper works. Animations are one thing, but one of the most interesting features is the ability to rapidly flip many pages at once as if you were holding a bunch of actual pages and quickly flipping through them. This is done by differentiation touch input that starts outside the bezel from input that starts within the bezel. The former shows an animation of the edge of multiple pages, and sliding your finger back over those as if you were releasing a page at a time makes the ebook flip through pages quickly. This is very useful if you want something in between a page slider and single page flipping in terms of flipping speed. I can tell you that in a 5-600 page PDF document, finding the exact page when you don’t know which document page number it’s on can take a while.

There are other features in this demo too, such as the ability to draw number gestures on the screen and have the ebook open that page. All in all great stuff here, but the question is if this will make it into any apps. First of all they state that it’s patented, which doesn’t necessarily stop anyone from copying it, but the fact that it uses Apple’s private APIs is a bigger problem. Once you try to submit something like that to Apple itself you will get rejected quicker than you can say “pretty please”. Knowing Apple, it will implement this into iBooks itself in iOS 6, with ot without any sort of licensing or credit given the inventors.


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Andreas Ødegård

Andreas Ødegård is more interested in aftermarket (and user created) software and hardware than chasing the latest gadgets. His day job as a teacher keeps him interested in education tech and takes up most of his time.

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