Volume 13 Number 2 - June 2009 Issue Submit Your Manuscript for Publication!

Online Journal of Nursing Informatics (OJNI) Summer 2009 Volume 13, Number 2
ISSN # 1089-9758 Indexed in CINAHL © 1996 - 2014

Citation: McGonigle, D (June, 2009). Editorial: Microsoft Surface Tension? iTable. Online Journal of Nursing Informatics (OJNI), 13, (2). Available at http://ojni.org/13_2/dee.htm


Microsoft Surface Tension? iTable

by Dee McGonigle, PhD, RN, FACCE, FAAN

Touch Don't get too attached to your mouse and keyboard because they are going to be outdated soon if Microsoft and PQ Labs have their way. Microsoft has introduced the Surface and PQ Labs is building custom iTables according to Kumparak (2009). Have you ever thought of digital information you can touch and grab? Microsoft and PQ Labs have evolved us into the next generation of computing, Surface or Table computing.

Surface or Table computing consists of a multi-touch, multi-user interface that allows you to "grab" digital information, collaborate, share, and store without using a mouse or keyboard - just your hands/fingers and devices such as your digital camera and PDA. This interface generally rests on top of a table and is so advanced that it can actually sense objects, touch and gestures from many users (Microsoft, 2008).

Imagine entering a restaurant and interacting with the menu through the surface. Once you have completed your order you can begin computing by using the capabilities built into the surface or using your own device such as a PDA. You can set the PDA on the surface and download images, graphics and text to the surface for example. You could even communicate using full audio and video with others while you wait for your order. When you are done eating, all you have to do is set your credit card on the surface and it is automatically charged. You pick up your credit card and leave. Now that is a different kind of eating experience but what will become commonplace for our next generation of users.

You might be asking when this new age of computing will be touched by typical users - right now in Las Vegas, of course, but also in select casinos, banks, restaurants and hotels throughout the US and Canada.

I urge you to explore this new interface that will forever change how we interact and compute. Think of the ramifications for health care...


Kumparak, G. (2009). Look out, Microsoft Surface - the iTable might just trump you in every way. Retrieved on May 28, 2009 from http://www.crunchgear.com/2009/01/10/look-out-microsoft-surface-the-itable-might-just-trump-you-in-every-way/

Microsoft Surface. (2008). Microsoft Surface: General Questions. Retrieved on May 28, 2009 from http://www.microsoft.com/SURFACE/about_faqs/faqs.aspx