How it works I: the components
A touchscreen system will consist of five basic parts:
- The touchscreen itself.
- A computer (typically a PC) whose display is fitted with the touchscreen;
- A controller card which drives the touchscreen and converts each touch into coordi-
- A software driver program which communicates between the controller card and the
computer's operating system.
Where are touchscreen systems used?
Companies in various industries have successfully used the power of touchscreens for a
wide variety of applications. Airlines use them to simulate aircraft cockpits and to train
pilots to fly. Real-estate agents use them to show full-colour property images to home-
buyers. Greeting card companies allow customers to create their own unique cards on
them. Restaurants have them to simplify their point-of-sale terminals, and medical
schools teach student nurses how to respond to crisis situations.
Current scope and future development of the technology
In the early 2000s, several distinct trends are likely to define the fast-growing touch-
screen marketplace. Prices will continue to drop steadily as volume and production
builds. At the same time, touchscreen performance capabilities should increase further.
This favourable shift in price/performance ratios will boost sales, particularly as PC's
make forays into uncharted territories where user-friendly interfaces are vital for inexpe-
rienced or disadvantaged computer users.