Istituto di Scienza e Tecnologie dell'Informazione     
Ghiani G., Leporini B., Paterṇ F. Vibrotactile feedback to aid blind users of mobile guides. In: Journal of Visual Languages and Computing, vol. 20 (5) pp. 305 - 317. Elsevier, 2009.
In this work, we report on a solution for providing support to the blind using mobile museum guides by exploiting the haptic channel as a complement to the audio/vocal one. The overall goal is to improve the autonomy and social integration of blind visitors. We followed an iterative approach in which the proposed system went through various user evaluations and further refinements. The final solution includes vibrotactile feedback enhancement for orientation and obstacle avoidance obtained through the use of unobtrusive actuators applied to two of the user's fingers combined with an electronic compass and obstacle detector sensors connected wirelessly to the mobile guide. Our study indicates that vibrotactile feedback is particularly useful to provide frequent unobtrusive indications of useful dynamic information, such as the level of proximity of an obstacle or the distance from the right orientation.
URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/1045926X
DOI: 10.1016/j.jvlc.2009.07.004
Subject Mobile guide
Blind users
Vibrotactile feedback
Multi-modal user interfaces
H.5.2 User Interfaces

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