Hi Internet! Thanks for checking out my project. I'm super excited to share with you what I have been working on for the past couple months. I think you will like it a lot and hopefully together, we can make it a reality.
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Works with iPad 2.
The MORE/REAL Stylus Cap turns a Sharpie, a Bic, or a Pilot Fineliner into a touchscreen stylus that works with any capacitive touch screen. You get all the benefits of a marker that can write on paper with a stylus that gives you superior control to sketch and take notes on touchscreens such as the iPad. I set out to design the Stylus Cap, mainly because I wanted one for myself. I love all the power tools like the iPad and iPhone bring to sketching and note-taking: you can quickly work out an idea from anywhere and send it off instantly to anyone. I've been in meetings with the iPad where I have been able to draw up a concept, have everyone take a look at it, make some tweaks, and then send it out to anyone else who wasn't in the meeting but needed the information. That kind of communication power continuously blows my mind.
Unfortunately, using your finger to do those tasks feels more like finger painting than doing something that requires more precision. We are preconditioned to using pens and markers for taking notes and drawing. There are a few styluses on the market that work with touchscreen devices, but for the most part they are less than ideal. Poor ergonomics and big, mushy points, these styluses feel like using a golf pencil with a tennis ball for a tip.
On the flipside, the more I used the iPad, the more I realized I didn't really want to fully walk away from using paper. There is an immediacy and decisiveness to using paper that allows me to quickly sort through my thoughts in ways that digital screens can't.
So I thought about this problem for awhile, until one day back in December, and I swear this how it played out, I was playing with the cap of a Sharpie, taking it on and off and on and off, just fixating on this cap when it suddenly hit me, "Uh, a cap would be a good stylus." It was not unlike that scene in 2001 where the apes suddenly realize bones could be used as weapons after they touch the monolith. I believe that makes me the ape. After that I was off to the races.
In all seriousness, what drove me forward was I was dying to get one of these into my hands. I've put a lot of thought into the quality of the materials, the tiny design touches that I always obsess over, the sustainability of the product, and now its at the point where to keep moving with it, the Stylus Cap needs your help.
The MORE/REAL Stylus Cap consists of two parts: the Cap and the Tip.
The Cap is machined from stainless steel and has a satin, bead blasted finish which gives the Stylus Cap a really solid and robust feel. The prototypes I have tested have survived drops on slate tiled floor with barely a scratch. The other advantage of using stainless steel is that it gives the cap a nice weight in your hand that feels like you are using a high end pen. The design is clean and free of decoration which allows you to focus completely on the task at hand.
The Tip is made of a conductive rubber that offers superior control compared to other styluses currently on the market. Its surface finish allows the stylus to glide over the screen and have a more natural drawing feel. While the tip prototypes I currently have are the smallest and most precise I've seen, I'm working with my manufacturing partners on making it even more accurate for the first production run. (This is where your backing comes really starts to come into play. Your support enables me to fine tune the Tip to be as responsive as possible.)
In addition, the tips of the Stylus Cap are replaceable. If for some reason a tip fails (which seems like it would be a rare occasion, they are fairly rugged) it doesn't mean you have to discard of the whole product. All you have to do is snap on a new tip and you will be ready to go. This is the only capacitive stylus with this capability. Good news for all Kickstarter Backers: you will receive an extra tip with your pre-orders and be able to order extras, should you ever need them, from more-real.com.
The Stylus Cap comes in three versions: 1 that caps a Sharpie Finepoint, 1 that caps a Bic Round Stic, and 1 that caps a Pilot Fineliner. Those are the only pens and markers that it works with for now, but I have more planned in the future.
The Stylus Cap should work with any capacitive touchscreen device. While I haven't tried it out on every possible touchscreen, I have tried it on quite a few and it works well. If your touchscreen device runs iOS, Android, webOS, or Windows Phone 7, its likely that the Stylus Cap works.
Another fun fact: The Stylus Cap works with knit gloves. If you have been looking for a way to sketch outside, on a touch screen, in sub zero conditions, rejoice because your prayers have finally been answered. I definitely did not design it to meet this purpose, but its a nice side benefit.
From the start of the design process of the Stylus Cap I set out to create the most sustainable product I possibly could. From every aspect of the product: clean efficient design, long-lasting and recyclable materials, smart manufacturing partners, and efficient distribution, I've considered how to do things smarter. I will be no means claim that the Stylus Cap's footprint is perfect or even as small as it can get, and by no means should you think I'm a sustainable design expert, but the point is to try the best I can and get better with each update.
So where do we start? Obviously the design is fairly straight forward: 2 parts, 2 materials. The Stainless Steel and Brass editions should last a very long time and are recyclable. The Tip is designed to be as small and material efficient as possible and still deliver consistently great results when in use. These two parts can be easily disassembled from each other so they can be separated into their own material streams down the road.
As for manufacturing, it will not only take place entirely in the US, but within a 15-mile radius of my hometown of Rochester, New York. Why is this important? Coordinating between three different manufacturing facilities (The Cap is machined at one shop, The Tip is injection molded at another, and the packaging printed at another) is tough enough, so having a short distance that the parts will need to travel get be assembled, packaged, and eventually shipped to you cuts down on lead times, and the amount of fuel needed to move parts around. On top of this, my manufacturing partners have some of the most advanced sustainability measures I've come across in industry. I'm looking forward to taking you on a tour of their facilities to show you the production of the Stylus Cap in the near future.
Like I said, I don't claim to be an expert on sustainability, just someone who feels its important to try to create sustainable goods. I'll be sharing everything I learn about it through this project with you, and if you have some great information that can make the Stylus Cap better I'd love for you to share it with me.
I hope you are half as excited as I am about this project. With your backing I'm confident I will deliver you a product that you will love to use. You will be hearing from me frequently as the project rolls along and production ramps up. Thanks again for checking out the MORE/REAL Stylus Cap!
Note: iPad, Apple logo and Apple are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. Sharpie and the Sharpie logo are registered trademarks of Sanford. Bic and the Bic logo are registered trademarks of Bic. Pilot, Fineliner, and the Pilot logo are registered trademarks of Pilot. MORE/REAL is not affiliated with these companies in any way.
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