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Multi-touch is still in its infancy, with three key constriction points, the operating system, the application software, and Wacom's touch technology. Because of this, the current multi- touch landscape can be somewhat spotty. Wacom is at the mercy of these other bedfellows, but does provide a useful multi-touch experience within limits. While the goal of multi-touch is to simplify the user experience, the presence of a keyboard, mouse, pen tablet, and gestural input can quickly become confusing.
Is there any hope? Let's take a look. The first thing you want to know is, how do you enable touch? On a Cintiq, you actually have a hardware button up here at the top that lets me enable touch. On the Intuos Tablet, you can go to the express keys panel, and there is a option in the drop-down menu for express keys that enable you to select that for one of your buttons. So, you have that option in both the Cintiq and the Intuos. Now I am going to begin and show you in three different applications, how each one of these applications is currently engaging touch and using it in concert with their software.
So, we're going to begin with SketchBook Pro. And SketchBook Pro allows me to resize and move around an image that I have opened up in the application. However I can't rotate. So, that's probably the simplest implementation we have right now. Next, we are going to go to Photoshop. Photoshop has got a little bit more going on the ball here. I can actually change sizes, and rotate. So, I can do both of those, but it's not quite seamless yet here, you can see how is it doesn't always want to catch my motions, and it seems to move the center point around, so that you'll get into some weird states where it's, there we go, see how that's kind of rotating in an odd place for where I would expect it to be.
And if I want to get back to square I've got to use my Escape key to do that. Now let's go to Painter, and once again, here's the same image. Now in Painter, and with Painter, I can move, rotate, scale all at the same time. So, in the race for multi-touch, at this taping, Painter has the edge, it's got the most fluid way to do this.
And to get back to just normal, just a double tap with two fingers will bring it up to full size and centered on my screen. So, you can see, we've looked at the same functionality in three different applications, and yet none of them act the same as the others. So, we're still in a very nascent period of multi-touch, and as a result, I would say, don't try to jump into this and get over your head. What you want to do is select a single function, perhaps what we just looked at here, scaling and rotating, and work it into your workflow, until it becomes seamless.
At that point, you can then begin to adapt to different functions and bring them in slowly, don't jump in over your head. Touch can be very useful, and an improvement in some situations. Windows 8 and Mac OS are both becoming more touch friendly with every version. Though it does seem to be the direction in which we are heading, you shouldn't buy a touch enabled tablet expecting a Minority Report kind of experience, just yet.
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