About the Project
Many people with motor impairments face major challenges with conventional mouse pointing as used in desktop user interfaces. To address this issue, we are investigating goal crossing--crossing target thresholds instead of pointing and clicking--as a basis for target acquisition. Our solution is to remove the two major obstacles to successful human-computer interaction for people with motor impairments: the need to point to confined areas, and the need to click within them.
Our prior studies ([ASSETS 2007] and [TACCESS 2008]) have shown that goal crossing is easier than pointing-and-clicking for people with motor impairments. Goal crossing may also be useful with non-standard input devices, such as laser pointers and eye-trackers. Although pen-based goal crossing has been previously studied, goal crossing on the desktop introduces new problems, not the least of which is the occlusion problem, which occurs when an unwanted goal sits between the cursor and the desired goal. Our designs attempt to solve this and other problems, and incorporate goal crossing into new, accessible desktop widgets.
This work is supported by the National Science Foundation under grant IIS-0811063 HCC-SMALL: The End of Pointing and Clicking: Improving Computer Access with Goal Crossing. Dr. Jacob O. Wobbrock is the PI on the grant. Co-PIs are Dr. Kurt L. Johnson and Dr. Daniel S. Weld. This project funding is now complete, having run from 2008 to 2012.