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Use your Apple Pencil to alter photos, make music and weigh things

Jessica Conditt, @JessConditt
November 23, 2015
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The Apple Pencil is aimed at professional artists who want to use the iPad Pro as a fancy creation tablet, but Simon Gladman has other uses in mind for the stylus. He made three Swift apps that use the Apple Pencil in new ways: as a synthesizer powered by AudioKit, in an image-editing program and as part of an electronic scale. PencilSynth uses the Apple Pencil's position on the iPad Pro to control the sound emitted, changing pitch and frequency as the Pencil travels at different angles across the screen. PencilController offers three image-filtering modes (hue/saturation, brightness/contrast and gamma/exposure), each controlled by holding one finger on the appropriate mode key and moving the Apple Pencil around a pivot point on the screen. PencilScale is the most "experimental" of Gladman's projects, using the Apple Pencil as a stand for a series of weights sitting directly on top of a scale app. Gladman calls PencilScale "sensitive, but not terribly accurate."

"The Apple Pencil opens up a world of new interaction design paradigms (despite what Jony Ive may tell us!)," Gladman writes on his blog. "PencilSynth and my Pencil-based image processing app are, I think, demonstrations that the Pencil is an excellent input device for controlling continuous values across multiple dimensions."

[Image credit: Simon Gladman]

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