Digital writing ‘boosts creativity’

Different types of computer input tools – often used by freelancers in the digital, design, marketing and media sectors – can substantially help their users’ ability to think creatively, a new book claims.

According to digital writing technologist Anoto, studies highlighted in the book show that using a digital pen interface stimulates people to write more spatial content, such as diagrams and symbols, compared with a keyboard.

The result, claims the book – The Design of Future Educational Interface, is a boost of up to 39 per cent in a user’s ability to produce ideas, solve problems and make accurate inferences about data.

Although confined to students, the studies involved different ages and ability levels, and featured Mathematics, Science and Reasoning tasks.

Anoto reflected: “The research reveals the advantages of using a digital pen as a ‘thinking tool’ for many computer tasks, compared with traditional keyboard-and-mouse interfaces.”

The book was written by Sharon Oviatt, an international authority on computer interface design and human cognition.

She said: “Digital pens are able to support a flow of communication involving all types of representation, including diagrams, symbols, numbers and words - and shifting fluidly among them while we think.

“With digital pen and paper, the Leonardo da Vinci in all of us is able to construct spatial content, which is the foundation of human cognition and a prerequisite for creative work.”


13th August 2013

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