Along with the TactiPad GraphGrid that we showed previously, we have also developed the TactiPad CircleFrame, which together form a set of intuitive TactiPad accessories. Both add-ons increase the easiness with which you can make a tactile drawing on the TactiPad and open up an even wider range of highly accurate and wonderfully creative drawings. In this weblog you will find a short overview of the added possibilities that these accessories can provide for education, professional and home use.
New approaches to build up a drawing
The most basic way to draw on the TactiPad is to make use of the entire surface and the measurements along the four sides. The ruler, triangle, protractor and compasses are all that is needed to make a freehand drawing.
The CircleFrame and GraphGrid both offer a different approach to construct a drawing. The many reference points and indications for distance and rotation that these accessories have, give way to a vast range of new creative and technical drawing options.
The CircleFrame exists of a frame the size of the TactiPad with a large circle cut out of the middle. The three drawing tools can be used along the perimeter and inside of the circle. This way, the drawing is shaped around the center of this circle.
The GraphGrid is a rectangular framework that is placed on the TactiPad like a picture frame. It has mounting points along both the inside and outside edges of the frame for rubber bands. These create a flexible grid which enables you to use a regular pattern of rows, columns and cells.
Use of the CircleFrame
The large triangle with smaller and larger waves and zigzag lines fits perfectly in the CircleFrame and can freely rotate in the circle. Rotating the triangle by small increments and tracing the shapes around the edges creates a wonderful overlapping tactile pattern.
The second triangle is constructed in such a way that, when placed with its corners in the indents around the circle, it exactly spans a rotation of 45, 60 or 90 degrees. By making your own templates out of cardboard, using sides the same lengths as the triangle and cutting a shape from the middle, the variation of traceable figures and patterns is endless.
The indications around the edge of the circle enable you to measure angles per five degrees. Just outside of the circle, larger angles are marked with extra indications: straight grooves show angles of 45 degrees, whilst drop-shaped indents are repeated every 30 degrees and thus show the hours on a clock. The minutes are formed by grooves in the wedge-shaped drawing tool, so you can draw a clock with ‘real’ our and minute hands. This wedge-shaped tool can also be used to precisely draw a pie chart to present statistic information.
The compasses can be combined with the CircleFrame in surprising ways as well to create concentric or overlapping circles that combine to form fascinating artistic or geometric drawings.
Using the GraphGrid
The flexible grid of rubber bands makes the measurements around the sides of the TactiPad tangible throughout the entire drawing surface. This way, you can make use of a regular, ordered grid in your drawings. You can play many games using the cells, like tic-tac-toe and battleship, or keep your own scores in games like Yatzee.
The GraphGrid can also be used as a table to present all sorts of data. In elementary school, children can learn concepts like bigger/smaller and more/less, learn to count or memorize their multiplication tables.
There are numerous applications for the GraphGrid in math as well, for example to construct a graph by using the grid as coordinates. Higher placed rubber bands can easily be identified as the x- and y-axis. The trigonometry drawing tool can be used to accurately draw a sine, cosine or tangent wave with the same scale as the measurements of the GraphGrid.