Over the past few months, you may have noticed that we've been participating in a collaborative initiative with Asus and Intel in an effort to bring the end user online community (you!) together with Asus design engineering and marketing teams to envision, innovate, design, and ultimately create the world's first "crowd-sourced" notebook product. Without question this was a lofty goal, however, it wasn't necessarily surprising in terms of the outcome that we can share with you today. When a group of creative, tech-mind individuals get together, the sky is usually the limit.
Although the initial result of the collaborative effort is still very much a concept, Asus has begun showing off a slick, dual-screen notebook design that was conceptualized using ideas put forth by a number of contributors to the WePC project. In a release on the Asus website, the company had this to say, "This year at CeBIT 2009, ASUS has unveiled a revolutionary dual panel concept notebook that is the result of the ideas contributed from users from around the world. As part of the 'Community Designed PC' project initiated by Asus and Intel, the concept is still a work-in-progress which requires continued feedback."
The unique, dual screen design of the WePC concept machine on display at CeBIT, allows for multiple configuration options that can be changed to suit the users' needs. Asus said, "Users can use the dual panel concept in a myriad of usage scenarios, for example, as a conventional notebook with multi-touch screens, a virtual keyboard and touchpad; a multimedia hub, in which both dual panels could combine to form a larger display for widescreen entertainment; or an E-book mode in which users can hold the dual panel concept notebook just like they would a conventional book while flipping pages through intuitive gestures or by touch." Some pictures of the concept machine configured in a few of the usage scenarios mention here, are available above.
Other planned features for the system include user adjustable virtual touchpad and keyboard dimensions, hand gesture and handwriting recognition, and a multi-touch user interface in which users are presented with a customizable control surface. As we've mentioned, the system is still a concept, so if you've got ideas or input you think would be useful to the project, by all means, share them with the team at the WePC website.