Screen navigation system for visually impaired people

Ohene-Djan, James and Fernando, Sandra (2018) Screen navigation system for visually impaired people. Journal of Enabling Technologies, 12 (3). pp. 114-128. ISSN 2398-6263


The SETUP09 system consists of both navigation and a computer-aided drawing technique for the people who are blind and visually impaired (BVI). The purpose of this paper is to address the need for a screen navigation technique, which can facilitate a user’s ability to produce art, and scientific diagrams electronically, by introducing a compass-based screen navigation method.

BVI computer users were tested using different screen navigation tasks to assess the accuracy and efficiency of this compass-based navigation technique by using a prototype (SETUP09) and tactile paper grid maps.

The results confirmed that the compass-based navigation facilitates higher accuracy in screen-based moving and location recognition with a noticeable reduction in time and effort.

Research limitations/implications:
Additional improvements such as the addition of a sound layer to the interface, use of hotkeys, braille and user speech inputs are yet to be tested.

Social implications:
The current lack of suitable and efficient screen navigation technology is a limiting factor for BVI students and computer users in producing diagrams and drawings. This may place limitations on their career progression and life contentment. It is challenging for a BVI person to draw diagrams and art, which are commonly taught in education or used in industry. The compass-based screen navigation system was developed to address BVI users’ need to be able to create such content.

A compass-based navigation method enables screen navigation through a formal command language and enables intuitive movement to a screen location using matrix-style compass directions with zoom-in and zoom-out capabilities.

use_Journal_JET-04-2018-0019-Journal 01EmeraldInsight.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives 4.0.

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