With today'sit can be hard to distinguish one device from the next. But here's something that sets the Kno Textbook Tablet apart (besides its ): it's getting stress-tested by a Lego robot.
The Kno product development team needed a way to automate tests of the ambient light sensor and the note-taking stylus' interaction with the LCD touch screen. So they built a Lego robotic arm (they give it the far less sexy name of "accelerated life test apparatus") to shoulder the repetitive work.
In the behind-the-scenes video below, you'll see the arm directing the pen back and forth and up and down across a screen, while another robot makes the device itself go back and forth. The team has been testing the stylus for touch, sweep, and flick motions that mimic those of a non-robotic user taking handwritten notes.
The fancy dual-screen model of the Knoat the D: All Things Digital conference last year as a device optimized for reading e-textbooks and taking notes at the same time. The 5.5-pound Linux device can hold up to 10 semesters of content, the company says, and costs a whopping $899, though Kno says that price is competitive with other education-specific products on the market. The Santa Clara, Calif.-based start-up also offers a 2.5-pound tablet for $599.
Both versions are currently selling on an invite-only basis to students and educators who commit to sharing their experiences with the device. Throw a free Lego robot in and we're betting a lot of people will be seriously tempted.