Learn how to make a capacitive stylus for your iPad, smartphone, or Android tablet, using just a few common office supplies.
Donald BellSenior Editor / How To
Donald Bell has spent more than five years as a CNET senior editor, reviewing everything from MP3 players to the first three generations of the Apple iPad. He currently devotes his time to producing How To content for CNET, as well as weekly episodes of CNET's Top 5 video series.
I've known for years that there are special pens that can be used with capacitive touch screens, like the ones used on the iPad or any modern tablet or smartphone. Still, I've never bought one. It's not that they're too expensive (some are as cheap as $5), it's just that my curiosity doesn't match the level of patience required to order one online and wait a few days for it to show up.
So when I read iLearn Technology's tutorial on making your own capacitive stylus using common office supplies, I had to give it a try. Provided that you can swipe the materials from your office supply closet, the pen costs nothing. With a few basic tools, you can make it in minutes.
In the end you'll have your own custom touch-screen pen. It may only entertain you for a few seconds, or it may inspire your kid to be the tablet-era Picasso. No matter what, you'll feel like MacGyver when you're done.