Panos Panay, the Microsoft VP in charge of Surface, today displayed a different way to use the company's tablet at the unveiling of the Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2. Called the Surface Remix Project, it's clearly based on the same touch-sensitive technology of the Touch Cover 2 but with a different template on top that changes the functionality -- and the tone of the product -- completely.
The Surface Remix Project is basically a simplified set of DJ controls built into a Touch Cover. Instead of QWERTY, you have 16 large square touch pads that let you to enable or disable portions of a given music track to remix it in real time. You also have three volume sliders on the left and a series of controls for playing, pausing, and muting songs and tracks. And, since all are pressure-sensitive, there's the potential for a bit of finger-drumming here, too.
The basic concept isn't so much to turn the Surface into a master DJ machine, but instead to show the potential for the Surface to be more than what you'd consider a traditional productivity machine. At its Surface 2 event, the company showed a video of design students dreaming up new applications for the tablet, including things like full piano keyboards. Could those sorts of things be next? We'll wait and see, but Microsoft is saying that the Remix Project will be available when the new slates ship on October 22. Price as of now is unknown.