Visual display systems have evolved significantly over the last decade. Touch screen technology is an interactive mode of display and communicating, which relies upon the ‘human touch’ or other passive objects such as a pen or a stylus. In today’s technology-savvy culture, touch screen is commonly used in electronic gadgets such as mobile phones, smart phones, ATM machines, computers etc.
Touch screen technology was developed as far back as 1971. Though it was not as transparent as modern touch screens, it was a significant breakthrough in fostering user-friendly and interactive features of this technology.
The main advantage of touch screen technology is its ability to enable the end user to directly interface with the display, rather than going through with indirect methods such as the mouse or touchpad. Moreover, it obviates the need for any intermediate device. The ease of use and the wide coverage of such devices have ensured that the prices for the same have steadily come down over the years. This has made it more accessible to the public.
There are several technologies by which touch screen display can be facilitated. Three main technologies for the same are resistive, capacitive and acoustic pulse recognition.
The resistive system comprises of a glass panel covered by a metallic layer, both of which are separated by spacers. An electric current passes through the two layers. As soon as the top most layers are touched, the system recognizes the field which is being selected on the second layer. This is converted to data co-ordinates for the computer which then reads the same into understandable format for the end user.
A capacitive system comprises of an electrically charged layer which is placed on top of a glass monitor. As soon as a user touches the charged layer, some part of the charge is passed on to the user. The co-ordinates at various ends of the computer read the fall in charge at a particular position and translate the field corresponding to it in a legible format to the user.
The acoustic pulse recognition technology works by converting the mechanical energy inherent in a touch to an electronic signal which can be read by the computer through an algorithm to determine the location of the touch and the field corresponding to the same. This is the most advanced touch screen technology with good optical clarity, which is able to work even in dusty and scratched surface screens.
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