Haptic kinematics of braille reading by one and two hands
Past Event Date:
Abstract - I will present some ongoing work examining two-handed braille reading in comparison to one-handed braille reading. This follows up on prior work by Daisy Lei, Natalie Stepien-Bernabe, Val Morash, and Manfred MacKeben who examined the effect of braille dot height on regressions in one-handed reading in which ten blind proficient braille readers aged 22 to 70, both left- and right-handed, read continuous prose passages embossed on paper (141 to 162 words in length, adapted from IReST texts) with one or both hands while reading aloud. Finger positions were measured at 240 Hz using electromagnetic position sensors attached to the participants’ fingers. Preliminary results show that reading braille with both hands allows for higher reading speeds than single-handed reading by, on average, about 27%, and that reading strategies varied widely between participants. Regressive hand movements could occur in either hand, or in both hands simultaneously, and increased with diminishing dot height. Notably, some participants read disparate text with the left and right hands simultaneously, a signature of “simultaneous disjoint reading” long debated in the braille reading literature.