Monday, May 25, 2009

T-Bars: Towards Tactile User Interfaces for Mobile Touchscreens

M. Hall, E. Hoggan, and S. Brewster, "T-Bars: towards tactile user interfaces for mobile touchscreens," in Proceedings of the 10th international conference on Human computer interaction with mobile devices and services Amsterdam, The Netherlands: ACM, 2008.

Mobile device user interface elements tend to be based on desktop widgets that were not originally intended for small screen finger-based interfaces. Mobile usage scenarios afford many completely different interactions, so should be designed accordingly. This paper presents a new type of widget, the T-Bar, designed specifically for finger-based touchscreen interfaces using tactile feedback. Using the tactile feedback for orientation, the user's fingertip is guided along the T-Bar until an item is successfully selected. This paper offers observations on our finger-based touchscreen widget and two applications of the T-Bar widget. Both, File-o-Feel and Touch 'n' Twist are multi-touch information browsing applications that deviate from traditional desktop GUI paradigms and are tailored for fingertip input where all interaction takes place through the use of T-Bars; eliminating the need for any other widgets.

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