Team Armour

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Thesis Statement


"There are challenges in toushcreen technology that other less intuitive methods of input have inherently overcome"

Older Version - "Touch screen technology has improved the interactions between human and computers by eliminating the middleware"


Direct Human-Machine Interaction; Eliminating Middleware; Touch Screen;


AMEInfo "HP redefines touchscreen PC experience with new ergonomic design"

Davis, Cyndi "Will touchscreen technology eliminate Ergonomic risk in computing and gaming?"

Bragg, Roy "Touch-Screen success would make PC mouse obsolete"

Ergonomics made easy"Ergonomic Keyboards"

Nintendo America "Nintendo Wii U"

Saffer, Dan "Activity Zones for touchscreen tables and phones"

Swann, Melanie "Ergonomics of Touch Screens"

Tannen, Rob "Designing *for humans"

Hsinfu Huang Li-Hao Chen "Enhancing Human-Computer Interaction and Feedback in Touchscreen Icon"

Michael Thornlund "Gesture Analyzing"

Tim Syth "Touching Technology"

Ashlee Vance "Haptics Adds New Dimensions to Touchscreens"

Immersion Corporation "Improving haptics in mobile"

Research Notes

Research Data

The increasing use of portable devices like smartphones and tablets have driven research for a more efficient user interface. These various research are aimed at helping users gain a quick and fast access to digital information from portable devices while maintaining similar or increased usability as a desktop computer with a mouse and keyboard.

As noted in Roy Bragg's post, touch screen provides a more natural interaction between humans and computers. With multi-touch, it is less time-consuming for a user to access information on the device. Another reason for the advancement of touch screen technology is trying to provide a more natural user interface and similar productivity on smaller devices, which would be infeasible if a keypad is used.

Although huge advancement are made in touch screen technology, they do suffer some various drawback similar to mouse and keyboards. Such drawbacks may result in injuring the user if not user properly.

For example in the paper "Ergonomics of Touch Screens", "the general rule of thumb for a display only machine is to locate the machine in the “optimal viewing area”. However, with a touch screen, not only do optimal viewing area need to be considered, but also the arm position of the users. Without proper screen positioning, repetitive use of touch screen technology can lead to tendonitis, tenosynovitis and carpal tunnel syndrome. In a standing workstation, the upper arms of a user should be in a neutral posture, beside the torso. To accommodate most users, this should be about 105cm – 140cm off the ground. Due to the characteristics of LCD monitors, users that operate a touch device without a proper angle with experience fuzziness and distortion to characters. The optimal viewing angle for any LCD surface is between 30 to 45 degrees".

A study conducted by Immersion corporation on "Haptics for mobile devices" determined that good haptic feedback reduces errors in input radically even if no visual information is provided. It is when no haptic feedback is used that errors in input ramp up dramatically. This is backed up by previous studies that determined that at a very young age, the sense of touch develops very sensitive qualities beyond just the presence and absence of it. The study concludes that the sense of touch can be used as a high bandwidth communication channel. Although devices that came before touchscreen are not very instinctive, they have always provided some form of haptic feedback, even if just by coincidence. The key of a keyboard going up and down, and a mouse being slid provide some information to the use via sense of touch; may that be that key reached its lowest position when being pressed, or that certain movement of the mouse represents the distance of one pixel and not two.

Other Topics

Note: Discussed in earlier stage. No longer used.

  • Motion gesture for mobile phones
  • OLED Phones (fold-able screen)
  • Gesture Recognition in games
  • Brain-computer interaction