Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Extending access through touch : a specification for a haptic graphic display
Author: Copeland, Damien Robert.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3562 5383
Awarding Body: Leeds Metropolitan University
Current Institution: Leeds Beckett University
Date of Award: 2007
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Tactile devices are prevalent in everyday life, including raised dots on computer keyboards and telephone keypads. Braille readers help to give blind users access to computers and tactile representations of maps and museum exhibits enhance blind people's experience of the world outside their houses. While computer applications and websites are often enhanced by graphics, these are difficult for blind people to access. A single haptic graphic display, aimed at presenting computer images for tactile exploration, is available for purchase, but this is based on existing Braille technology and is expensive. While there is an active research community investigating haptic graphic displays, this concentrates largely on identifying technologies that can be employed in the presentation of images, and few researchers have considered the requirements for such devices. This represents a gap in existing research. This thesis describes the development of a series of prototypes based on pin (also known as tactile elements or taxels) arrays for use within experiments aimed at specifying the requirements for a haptic graphic display. A number of experiments are documented that investigate the requirements for attributes of a display, including resolution, taxel head size, taxel height, the most natural exploration method and the required resistance force to maintain a raised image during exploration. The results suggest that a resolution of 10 taxels per inch, a taxel head size of 2mm, a taxel height of 3mm, a resistance force of 130mN and a constrained exploration style offer a promising starting point for specifying a haptic graphic display based on a pin matrix. The results of the experiments, which are presented in the form of a formal specification, suggest that the commercially available device and a limited number of the prototypes developed for prior research come close to meeting the requirements of the participants used in this study. While this research is incomplete with regard to the lack of use of blind participants, it provides a much-needed baseline specification that will enable further research to evaluate and, if necessary, amend the specification for the target user groups.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available