Signing on the tactile line: a multimodal system for teaching handwriting to blind children

Beryl Plimmer, Peter Reid, Rachael Blagojevic, Andrew Crossan, Stephen A. Brewster

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


    We present McSig, a multimodal system for teaching blind children cursive handwriting so that they can create a personal signature. For blind people handwriting is very difficult to learn as it is a near-zero feedback activity that is needed only occasionally, yet in important situations; for example, to make an attractive and repeatable signature for legal contracts. McSig aids the teaching of signatures by translating digital ink from the teacher's stylus gestures into three non-visual forms: (1) audio pan and pitch represents the x and y movement of the stylus; (2) kinaesthetic information is provided to the student through a force-feedback haptic pen that mimics the teacher's stylus movement; and (3) a physical tactile line on the writing sheet is created by the haptic pen.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number17
    Pages (from-to)1-29
    Number of pages29
    JournalACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Jul 2011



    • multimodal system
    • visual impairement
    • handwriting

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