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Pen allows you to scan text by hand

A SOPHISTICATED portable electronic scanner has been developed by the Swedish firm C Technologies. The C-Pen looks like a large highlighter, but its recessed head houses a tiny digital camera.

As the device is moved over a line of text up to 50 images a second are taken, converted into computer-readable text and stored in the pen's large eight megabyte memory. About 3,000 pages of text can be saved and transferred by infra-red signal to a PC.

Up to four lines of text can be displayed and edited on the screen. The recognition system is claimed to be more than 95 per cent accurate and any characters not recognised can then be altered by selecting another and inserting it.

At pound;249 plus VAT, the C-Pen is being targeted at business users, but it has many educational applications. See the next issue of TES Online on September 10 for a review.

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