|Coordinator||Lunds universitet - Institutionen för designvetenskaper|
|Funding from Vinnova||SEK 1 000 000|
|Project duration||September 2008 - August 2012|
Purpose and goal
The haptiMap project is aimed at making maps and location based services more accessible by using several senses like touch, hearing and vision.
Expected results and effects
In HaptiMap we will: * Identify what location and map-based information is relevant for users in different situations and for different tasks. * Find out how this information should be accessed and represented multimodally, and how can this be supported in software. * Find out how the information should be filtered and presented depending on the context and the task. * Improve design practices by raising awareness and by developing methods that better support the inclusion of accessibility issues in industrial design practices. * To see to it that the developed tools, methods and materials reach out into industrial practice. * Assist accessible design and development of geospatial systems (via guidelines). * Assist developers of geospatial systems by providing a toolkit containing software and hardware modules. * Provide illustrations of the developed tools through demonstrator applications. * Make future designers and developers better prepared for the design of accessible systems.
Planned approach and implementation
The persisting problem of displaying information on the small screens of mobile devices is pushing both display development as well as the development of non-visual interaction channels such as gestures, tactile/ haptic interaction and sound, but one problem is that often the non-visual channels are used just as an enhancement of the visual instead of truly designed to maximize the haptic and auditory channels themselves. Improved multimodal perceptualizations (visualization including other senses than the visual) would make applications more accessible and also easier to use in actual mobile, navigational situations. Thus, HaptiMap will enable digital maps and mobile location based services to be accessible to a wide range of users. Our strategy is twofold, firstly to develop tools that make it easier for developers to add adaptable multimodal components (designed to improve accessibility) into their applications and, secondly, to raise the awareness of these issues via new guidelines and to suggest extensions to existing design practices so that accessibility issues are considered throughout the design process. In HaptiMap we have chosen to focus on geospatial information and maps since this kind of information typically tends to be hard to access for persons with limited visual ability. We expect our results to be relevant also for mobile phones and computers in general. The result of the design method development is another part of the work that is not tied exclusively to maps and location based services, and which will be relevant for a wider audience. In the HaptiMap project our goal is to increase the number of persons who are able to use mainstream map services. Thus our user group contains both sighted persons and persons with visual impairments (including elderly persons).