Update on 6-19-2014: Adobe has officially unveiled its digital stylus and ruler, now known as Ink and Slide, respectively. The products come as a set, and sells for $200. Click here to read more.
Wouldn’t Illustrator be much easier to use with an actual pen? Adobe thinks so. During Adobe’s MAX conference in Los Angeles this week, in addition to converting its Creative suite to what it calls its Creative Cloud, the company also announced two new hardware endeavors. Called Project Mighty and Project Napoleon, these guys are designed to work with Adobe’s touch and tablet apps. Project Mighty is a pressure sensitive stylus, and Project Napoleon is a small ruler that projects straight lines onto the tablet for more precise drawings.
Project Mighty is much more than just a stylus. The pen is able to access a user’s personal Creative Cloud, pulling previous sketches from there, and even copying and transferring them between devices such as a tablet and phone. Mighty uses Bluetooth along with built-in memory and a rechargeable battery. The pressure sensitive tip does more than just draw one type of line. A button on Mighty allows you to switch between a pencil, pen, and other drawing implements. The accompanying tablet apps are able to differentiate between the pen and your finger, so erasing is as easy as running your finger over the drawing. Multiple finger tip touches are also able to undo and redo actions.
Project Napoleon looks just like a small ruler, but it actually works in tandem with the Mighty pen to create perfectly straight lines that will snap into place in your drawing. It’s also able to assist in drawing other common shapes such as arcs. Based on what Adobe has said, Napoleon works by projecting a digital line onscreen that goes beyond the ruler’s length. The diminutive size of the ruler (hence the name, Napoleon) makes it easy to work with and transport while still providing full-size functionality.
Adobe hasn’t stated when either device will be released, but the company has hinted that Projects Mighty and Napoleon will not be the only hardware the company releases in the future. The idea of Adobe in the hardware market is certainly interesting and we can’t help but wonder if an Adobe-branded tablet could emerge in the future.