The SixBack

SixBack is a physical user interface providing most PC keyboard functions and pointer control features in pocket size. It also solves the problem of providing practical text input for tiny mobile devices  -  with a full character set.

SixBack uses the GKOS keyboard and a TrackPoint (reg. trademark of IBM) mouse (or alike) to implement a small compact multimedia terminal. The keyboard lid on the back of the terminal can be turned to a typing position so that the keys are within easy reach for the fingers while the hands are in a natural position.

The dimensions (see below) have been selected so that the terminal can be held by the user like a game control or, alternatively, like a binocular. Simultaneous use of mouse and keyboard is possible with the 'game control grip', while for typing large amounts of text, the 'binocular grip' is more suitable and convenient. The keyboard is also usable when turned back towards the back panel. So, for dialling, browsing or typing small amounts of text, it is not necessary to take out the keyboard. Additionally, SixBack is a desk top device.

The SixBack concept can be applied to many purposes. For example, the device (with a screen) can make a stand-alone pocket PC, a wireless cellular communicator/browser/phone, or just a remote control (no screen necessary) for a PC, fully replacing the keyboard and mouse.


The values shown in this dimensioning example are in millimeters and degrees.

Note that the keyboard and the supporting plate are firmly stable i both positions (keyboard out or against the back) if there are springs forcing the plate out and other springs forcing the keyboard in towards the back of the device.

Seppo Tiainen 5 September 2002

The old SixBack page is here