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Haptic Grapher

In conjunction with the W Ross MacDonald School for students with visual disabilities in Brantford Ontario, the Adaptive Technology Resource Centre has undertaken the development of a haptics graphing tool. The Haptic Grapher will allow students the ability to "feel" computer generated line graphs.

Students with visual disabilities face great challenges when attempting to learn information depicted in a graphical mode. Methods for teaching graphing skills to such students are primitive at best. Often teachers spend extraordinary amounts of time using string, "sticky wicket" and spray glues in order to be able to build tactile versions of relatively simple graphs.

The Haptic Grapher generates a line according to coordinates entered by either student or teacher. Students can change coordinates, and add or subtract points from the line, and the Haptic Grapher will dynamically generate the new line. After completing the line, students grasping a Wingman mouse and/or joystick, are "moved" through the various points on the line, thereby offering visually disabled students a sense of the overall shape of the line. It is the intention of the development team that the Haptic Grapher will also be capable of printing out Braille versions of the graphs generated.

Accessibility features of the Haptic Grapher include:

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The Adaptive Technology Resource Centre

J.P. Robarts Library, First Floor, University of Toronto Information Commons
130 St. George St. Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5S 3H1
Telephone: (416) 978-4360 Fax: (416) 971-2629

For additional information please e-mail Laurie Harrison