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Manufacture and Distribute Writing Instruments Based On Anoto Technology
Anoto, A Subsidiary of C Technologies, and Sanford, One of the World's Leading
Pen Producers to Manufacture and Distribute Writing Instruments Based On Anoto Technology
BOSTON,April 27, 2001--Sanford, one of the world's leading producers of writing instruments and Anoto
(tm), a subsidiary of C Technologies (CTEC), will collaborate to develop writing instruments featuring Anoto functionality. This will
allow anyone writing with an Anoto-enabled Sanford pen on digital paper to have handwritten notes wirelessly transmitted to any
Sanford, part of the $6.2 billion Newell Rubbermaid Inc. (NWL), has been making quality writing instruments for more than 140
years. Its products include Parker(R), rotring(R), and Waterman(R) fine writing instruments, Paper Mate(R) and Reynolds(R) branded
products, and a stable of well-known marker products - Sharpie(R), Accent(R), Expo(R), and Vis-a-Vis(R). This collaboration will
enable Sanford to digitally and wirelessly enable their pen products through the Anoto technology.
"Sanford is one of the leaders in the writing instrument's industry today", says Christer Fahraeus, President of Anoto AB. "This
collaboration is an exciting opportunity for both companies, allowing our technology to be widely spread while enabling Sanford to
enter the digital and computing arena for the first time".
"Sanford has long been known as a top of the line producer of quality writing instruments", says Bob Stoltz, Executive Vice
President of Sanford International. "We are pleased to be able to extend our offerings of high quality products by utilizing Anoto's
exciting technology that will truly allow handwritten communications to go digital".
Sanford, part of the $6.2 billion Newell Rubbermaid Inc. (NWL), has been making quality writing products for more than 140
years. Today, Sanford is a worldwide leader in writing instruments and is well known for Sharpie(R) permanent markers -- the
number-one selling permanent marker in the world, Accent(R) highlighters, Expo(R) dry-erase markers, Prismacolor(R) and
Grumbacher(R) professional art products, Pink Pearl(R) erasers, Mirado(R) premium wood pencils, rotring(R) high-value writing
instruments, Paper Mate(R), Parker(R), Waterman(R), and Reynolds(R) writing instruments, and Liquid Paper(R) correction
products. All are leaders within the stationery products industry.
The Anoto concept intuitively connects paper and pen with the digital world. The concept consists of a pattern that can be printed
on any paper, a digital pen with Anoto functionality that can read the pattern and record the pressure and movement of the pen,
advanced image processing and the information structure pinpointing the pen's position on the pattern and which service the user has
chosen to activate. Everything that is written on digital paper with Anoto functionality is stored in the digital pen and forwarded by a
Bluetooth-enabled device (e.g. a mobile phone) to any computer or mobile phone in the world.
The digital pen with Anoto functionality uses ordinary ink, but unlike the ordinary ballpoint pen, it also has a "scanning eye"
consisting of an infrared camera and an advanced image-processing unit. The pen contains a Bluetooth radio transceiver. When writing
with an Anoto pen on a paper printed with the Anoto pattern, digital snapshots of the pattern are taken continuously. Every snapshot
contains enough information to make a calculation of the exact position of the pen. A digital trace is thus created by the movement of
The digital pen with Anoto functionality does not only record what was written, but also how it was done. The application can
therefore be used to verify and identify who wrote. The pen records simultaneously position, speed, pressure on the paper and the
exact time. The information is transmitted, via a mobile phone or computer, as a graphical e-mail, fax, SMS or input to databases
assisted by the infrastructure provided by the Anoto concept.
The Anoto concept will be used in a number of services and applications. Later this year basic services enabling handwritten text to
be transmitted directly as a graphical e-mail, fax or SMS will be launched. It will also be possible to save handwritten notes and
Post-it(R) notes in the computer. Additionally the concept enables a large number of vertical applications, such as placing electronic
orders, for example from an advertisement in a magazine, or filling in case records, order sheets and forms.