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Superpower Your Touchpad Computer with Scrybe

Are you looking for a way to help your Touchpad computer make you more productive?  Here’s a quick look at Scrybe, a new application from Synaptics that lets you superpower it.

Touchpad devices have become increasingly interesting as they’ve included support for multi-touch gestures.  Scrybe takes it to the next level and lets you use your touchpad as an application launcher.  You can launch any application, website, or complete many common commands on your computer with a simple gesture.  Scrybe works with most modern Synaptics touchpads, which are standard on most laptops and netbooks.  It is optimized for newer multi-touch touchpads, but can also work with standard single-touch touchpads.  It works on Windows 7, Vista, and XP, so chances are it will work with your laptop or netbook.

Get Started With Scrybe

Head over to the Scrybe website and download the latest version (link below).  You are asked to enter your email address, name, and information about your computer…but you actually only have to enter your email address.  Click Download when finished.

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Run the installer when it’s download.  It will automatically download the latest Synaptics driver for your touchpad and any other components needed for Scrybe.

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Note that the Scrybe installer will ask to install the Yahoo! toolbar, so uncheck this to avoid adding this worthless browser toolbar.

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Using Scrybe

To open an application or website with a gesture, press 3 fingers on your touchpad at once, or if your touchpad doesn’t support multi-touch gestures, then press Ctrl+Alt and press 1 finger on your touchpad.  This will open the Scrype input pane; start drawing a gesture, and you’ll see it on the grey square.  The input pane shows some default gestures you can try.

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Here we drew an “M”, which opens our default Music player.  As soon as you finish the gesture and lift up your finger, Scrybe will open the application or website you selected.

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A notification balloon will let you know what gesture was preformed.

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When you’re entering your gesture, the input pane will show white “ink”.  The “ink” will turn blue if the command is recognized, but will turn red if it isn’t.  If Scrybe doesn’t recognize your command, press 3 fingers and try again.

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Scrybe Control Panel

You can open the Scrybe Control panel to enter or change commands by entering a box-like gesture, or right-clicking the Scrybe icon in your system tray and selecting “Scrybe Control Panel”.

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Scrybe has many pre-configured gestures that you can preview and even practice.

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All of the gestures in the Popular tab are preset and cannot be changed.  However, the ones in the favorites tab can be edited.  Select the gesture you wish to edit, and click the gear icon to change it.  Here we changed the email gesture to open Hotmail instead of the default Yahoo Mail.

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Scrybe can also help you perform many common Windows commands such as Copy and Undo.  Select the Tools tab to see all of these commands.

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Scrybe has many settings you may wish to change.  Select the Preferences button in the Control Panel to change these.  Here’s some of the settings we changed.

  • Uncheck “Display a message” to turn off the tooltip notifications when you enter a gesture
  • Uncheck “Show symbol hints” to turn off the sidebar on the input pane
  • Select the search engine you want to open with the Search Gesture.  The default is Yahoo, but you can choose your favorite.

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Adding a new Scrybe Gesture

The default Scrybe options are useful, but the best part is that you can assign gestures to your own programs or websites.  Open the Scrybe control panel, and click the plus sign on the bottom left corner.  Enter a name for your gesture, and then choose if it is for a website or an application.

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If you want the gesture to open a website, enter the address in the box.

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Alternately, if you want your gesture to open an application, select Launch Application and then either enter the path to the application, or click the button beside the Launch field and browse to it.

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Now click the down arrow on the blue box and choose one of the gestures for your application or website.

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Your new gesture will show up under the Favorites tab in the Scrybe control panel, and you can use it whenever you want from Scrybe, or practice the gesture by selecting the Practice button.

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Conclusion

If you enjoy multi-touch gestures, you may find Scrybe very useful on your laptop or netbook.  Scrybe recognizes gestures fairly easily, even if you don’t enter them perfectly correctly.  Just like pinch-to-zoom and two-finger scroll, Scrybe can quickly become something you miss on other laptops.

Download Scrybe (registration required)

Matthew digs up tasty bytes about Windows, Virtualization, and the cloud, and serves them up for all to enjoy!

  • Published 05/10/10

Comments (8)

  1. Colin Clark

    thanks–you’re in the right job

  2. varoon

    I am using a lenovo thinkpad R61 with windows vista.I tried installing scrybe but on opening the setup i get a notification saying:Scrybe cannot be installed on your computer because your computer does not meet the requirements.You must have a Synaptics touchpad and a synaptics driver to run Scrybe.
    Please give me solution to this!!

  3. Navjot

    This is really awesome :)
    You have new options available if you go to Mouse Properties under Control Panel and click on the Device Settings tab then click on the Settings button.

  4. Mark

    I had a problem installing to my laptop with synapics touchpad, it said i didn’t have required hardware so i updated the driver and its installing now no worries.

  5. el mexicano

    I like to customize stuff for my needs, so I’m posting this here but always think of backup the files before editing them ;-)

    In the folder “C:\Documents und Settings\USERNAME\Application Data\Synaptics\Scrybe” you can find an .xml-File

    Open that and there you can edit the entries, even the provided ones…,

    saludos el mexicano

  6. Matthew Guay

    @el mexicano – Nice find … thanks for sharing! :)

  7. Bjarnovikus

    Really great stuff… But why can’t you delete most of the gestures… like facebook, ebay,… I don’t need them :(

  8. Matthew Guay

    @Bjarnovikus – Yes, I found it annoying that you couldn’t delete most of the pre-configured gestures, but I assume that is because of marketing deals with these sites. But, did you try out @el mexicano’s suggestion above? Looks like you can edit everything in the XML file he found….

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