Designing Tactile Vocabularies for Haptic Interaction
This project presents a series of studies about tactile languages in Human-Computer Interaction and a novel approach for vibrotactile prefixation.
Part I: Initial Vocabulary for Tactile Navigation
We have created a vibrotactile language to characterize elements of a path, such as obstacles and routes to aid navigation. What we called Initial Vocabulary is actually the first iteration of our development process. As a means to ascertain the feasibility of designing tactile interfaces, we designed and tested this primary vocabulary. The idea of Modifier was applied experimentally in this initial design.
Part II: Enhancement of the Tactile Language
The message set was increased to transmit more information during the navigation task. The prototype of the tactile display was redesigned to make it worn as a belt. We designed three tactile vocabularies with different approaches: a conventional one, based only on metaphors; a modifier-based vocabulary with patterns made by juxtaposition of tactons in sequence; and another modifier-based vocabulary with patterns made by superposition.
Part III: Redesign and Application Trial
What we called Final Vocabulary is a set of tactile icons composed by the best perceived and also more distinguishable patterns of our previous user study. We chose to redesigned our tactile vocabulary for aid the navigation in an underground mine which is one of our target applications. We performed user experiments in a virtual representation of a mine. Some of the participants were Mining Engineering students.