Hacked Gadgets Forum

December 29, 2006

Cool Pen Calculator

at 5:18 am. Filed under Cool Gadgets, Electronic Hacks


Check out this cool pen, I know it’s for kids but there is some serious technology in there! You can get your own here.

“Pretty fly for an educational toy! The Fly Pentop Computer is the wave of the future–today. So…what is it? It’s an electronic pen with a brain (a built-in computer processor) and a recorded voice. Tweens (the targeted market) use a fat pen with a tiny optical scanner near the point to draw words, pictures, or codes that the computer reads and responds to. So for example, one can draw a calculator and tap numbers to help figure out algebra homework or how many weeks’ worth of allowance will buy another cool FLYware cartridge. With the pen kids can also keep track of schedules (much like a PDA), learn geography, play games, translate languages, and actually lay down tracks on keyboards and drums!”

Via: TechEBlog


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9 Responses to “Cool Pen Calculator”

  1. hoonflap Says:

    could you remove the voice output in favor of an lcd?

  2. hihi Says:

    oh my god this is the best thing yet.

  3. Tweaq Says:

    Although I’m pretty sure you have to use their special pad of paper or something similar.

  4. m56 Says:

    I’m wondering about the pad of paper, too. If it requires a special pad you have to carry around, why not just have nicely made permanent pages for the various functions of the pen? In which case why not just have a thin calculator or whatever.

    But I could see some potential for a totally self contained pen unit (with a headphone jack), which only required a surface to write on… perhaps a drum machine or a sequencing synth (like a tb303) that you could draw out the controls for on any paper or wood surface…

  5. Alexander Says:

    You do need the special paper, it will not work with anything but the special paper.

    I belive it uses a infrared sensor to determin what you’ve written by watching special symbols that show up under infrared light move around, and it can also tell which location you’ve written them down on the paper–that’s how the calculator works.

  6. dkjoser Says:

    Great just what we need another tech that needs special paper, it’s a great idea, just get rid of the special paper. I think with this you can even learn other basic lag. I wana learn basic jap and china sim bulls. Or make one that has a screen that has a data base in it, a big data base in it, like 40 gigs of sim bulls that I would buy, for a 100 bucks. I think you can use something like a psp and hack it for a touch screen, or just use old tablet PC that was from back in 98 days and you just have to redesign the software for your needs, with linux

    Later Have a happy new year

    Wish I could Spell better

  7. tjcook Says:

    Re post from m56–you can indeed carry around permanent pages for the pen functions, and the flycatcher (ugh) case which LeapFrog will sell you has a transparent pocket to support this. In addition, the pen comes with several credit-card sized cards which contain a pre-drawn calculator, for instance, as well as stickers which tell the pen to say the date and time…among other things.

    But part of the mystique of the Fly is being able to start with a blank sheet of paper and drawing your own flycons, such as a C with a circle around it to build your own calculator, or keyboard, or calendar entry, from scratch. Very cool.

    Leapfrog does indeed provide earbuds with the pen, as well as a nice speaker. And you can indeed draw your own piano keyboard or drum set.


  8. tjcook Says:

    In regard to hacking, though…

    I would like to use the Fly pentop with my Fourth Grade Sunday School class, but that means hacking at least the software (if not figuring out how to use the USB connection and the expansion cartridge connection). Some folks have begun work on these, but not much fruit so far.

    The one thing I have figured out is how to use the Fly Test package to build my own quiz and test sheets. You have to purchase the expansion cartridge for this, along with special Test flypaper, but you can print your own tests by “reverse compiling” the tests available on the Fly web site for download. I found a test package on eBay, and am going to start earnest experimentation.

    I think the Fly Memorizer would also be adaptable to subject matter expansion, but haven’t found that package yet at less than the $35 retail price.

    Any ideas?


  9. skittleskater Says:

    that is absolutly amazing! I need that pen.

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