Livescribe's Pulse smartpen gets an app store


In the end, everything will have an app store. Take the Pulse smartpen from Livescribe, for example. The company, whose pen is quite cool (it records what you write and can “remember” things on page, allowing for paper-based calculators and control panels), has just launched an app store for its 2- and 4GB Pulse pens.

The store offers multiple games, tools, and study aids for prices that range from free to about $2. You can download apps here and then upload to your pen.

Take Video Poker, for example. To play, you select it on your pen and then draw Deal, Bet, and card shapes. You then select the cards you want to keep and tap deal. The pen will tell you if you’ve won. My favorite app, however, is the periodic table of the elements in Braille, demoed below:

The amazing thing is that this application replaces a $1,000 physical device used by the blind to learn chemistry. By printing a Braille-embedded sheet at home, you can essentially learn everything there is to know about the elements using the pen and a piece of paper. Other cool apps include a classical music learning system and a clever piano.

Does a smart pen need an app store? I don’t know. However, the fact that something so small and so cool can have a rich developer community is quite impressive.