uWatch2 128x32 option



#2

I've been looking at a 128x32 display option, which depending upon certain circumstances, might be the best or possibly only practical option.

At present the actual physical implementation for the 128x64 display is not looking that great, board-to-board interconnects are looking troublesome (unless someone has a source of easy to get and cheap custom elastomeric connectors).

The 128x32 display solution is a bit cheaper, a bit more rugged, and available in white and blue displays:

As usual, comments and heated discussions welcome :->

Dave.

Edited: 27 Apr 2009, 8:58 p.m. after one or more responses were posted


#3

Well, I liked the 128 x 64 option because I was counting on getting my oft-hoped-for display of the X, Y, Z, T stack and Last X. But if it won't work, I can live with whatever you can give us!


#4

Quote:
Well, I liked the 128 x 64 option because I was counting on getting my oft-hoped-for display of the X, Y, Z, T stack and Last X. But if it won't work, I can live with whatever you can give us!

I can make the 128x64 display work easily if I don't center it, but I just can't bring myself to produce an unsymmetrical design!

Note that the 128x32 display has a significantly wider visible display window than the 128x64.

A sample polydome switch overlay is on it's way, and I've got some samples of some really nice Snaptron domes, but they are 6mm and hence we'd probably have fewer keys. But it would be a higher quality keypad with a real "click" instead of the "spongy" polydome feel.

Dave.


#5

In general, I'd vote for quality over quantity so far as keys are concerned. How many fewer would it be?

Nigel (a satisfied uWatch owner!)

#6

Quote:
I can make the 128x64 display work easily if I don't center it, but I just can't bring myself to produce an unsymmetrical design!

I can certainly understand the desire for symmetry. With that said, could you post an image of how it would be arranged and let the keyboard designers have a crack at making it look good?

.


#7

Quote:
I can certainly understand the desire for symmetry. With that said, could you post an image of how it would be arranged and let the keyboard designers have a crack at making it look good?

Here it is:

As you can see, one column on the left has to be dropped, and there is really no room above the B and C keys for extra keys. Perhaps one if you keep the staggered layout like last time.

Oh, I forgot the Z alpha which needs to go somewhere.

4mm polydome samples should be in today so I can see if this is even remotely feasible.

Dave.


#8

Quote:
Oh, I forgot the Z alpha which needs to go somewhere.

Nah, Q and Z got dropped from the phone keypad, you can drop it too. :-) Or, just try something new like the Greek alphabet. Only 24 characters. That leaves you an extra character, use it for "space".

Of course you can always do the alpha à la 42S.

#9

Quote:
I can make the 128x64 display work easily if I don't center it, but I just can't bring myself to produce an unsymmetrical design!

From a design perspective, asymmetry = visual interest. There have been many asymmetrical calc designs -- look at the big single ENTER key on many of out beloved HPs, or the layout of the Voyagers with an offset screen. In terms of watches, there have also been quite a number of asymmetric layouts, including many high-end watches, and almost all big rectangular LCD sports watches. At least show us where the screen would be you did use it; we might come up with a layout that pleases you...

Quote:
Note that the 128x32 display has a significantly wider visible display window than the 128x64.

Well I agree that would be preferred. What about contrast, which should be as high as possible? Do you have a sample to look at?

Quote:
A sample polydome switch overlay is on it's way, and I've got some samples of some really nice Snaptron domes, but they are 6mm and hence we'd probably have fewer keys. But it would be a higher quality keypad with a real "click" instead of the "spongy" polydome feel.

Few keys means more shifted keys means more keystrokes, but that's par for the course on a calc watch -- my CFX-200 might require ten keystrokes for a function if it was in the wrong place in the "function ring". The CFX-400 had four shift keys, which was OK, but even so the keyboard was really too small to use easily.


--
Dave


#10

Quote:
From a design perspective, asymmetry = visual interest. There have been many asymmetrical calc designs -- look at the big single ENTER key on many of out beloved HPs, or the layout of the Voyagers with an offset screen. In terms of watches, there have also been quite a number of asymmetric layouts, including many high-end watches, and almost all big rectangular LCD sports watches. At least show us where the screen would be you did use it; we might come up with a layout that pleases you...

It's not really about coming up with a key layout, that's easy, it's just a fundamental issue I have with an offset screen in this design. I just don't like it, but that's not a show stopper.

Yes, some designs look very good when asymmetrical, but in this case I don't think it does. See for yourself, an image is up. It might be a moot point anyway if the keypad is just not practical at this spacing.

BTW, the wife (director of R&D finances) has vetoed the smaller screen, she likes the look of the bigger one. So asymmetrical it might have to be.

Yes, I have both LCD's, but have not powered them up yet. That requires a bit of work...

Dave.

Edited: 28 Apr 2009, 10:01 p.m.


#11

My preference is the version at the beginning of this thread. But even if I buy one I probably wouldn't use it.

My original is still waiting for assembly.

#12

Quote:
Well I agree that would be preferred. What about contrast, which should be as high as possible? Do you have a sample to look at?

Here you go, the screen IN ACTION

Contrast appears to be very good. Although I have not tweaked it much to find out what it's capable of, this is just some random contrast value I entered that works well. Contrast is adjustable in software up to 64 steps.

Dave.

#13

128 x 32 is comparable to the much appreciated HP42S, so it may be quite acceptable... It may restrict the menu keys, but with a small font (like the HP48 menus, which I don't like at all), it may work...

#14

I was hoping for 64.

IMHO, the position of the lower left keys would be more familiar like this:

Rv     x<>y
Shift STO/RCL
C/ESC FUNC
#15

Howdy: A few days ago I posted a suggested keyboard design, to the previous thread regarding its layout. The text of that post and its logic applies similarly, to these two suggested layouts for
the bottom three rows.

Thanks Dennis Trafananko


#16

Thanks Dennis

A few people have suggested this sort of "reverse" number pad layout, and that it somehow "makes sense", but I can't say I've ever seen a calculator with such a layout.
Almost every calc on the market starts with the "1" at the bottom left and works right then upwards.

Dvorak keyboards "make sense" too, but they represent <0.0001% of the market. So I'd need a pretty darn good reason for going against the traditional bottom left then upwards layout.

Dave.


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