Computational Tool to Support Communication for People with Extreme Motor Impairment

  • Guilherme M. A. Ramos USP
  • Victor O. N. Sales USP
  • Cesar A. C. Teixeira USP


People can lose motor capabilities for a variety of reasons, like accidents and infirmities. In extreme situations, as found in patients diagnosed with ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), individuals lose full motor capabilities, only being able to move their eyes[1]. As a consequence, communicating, for these individuals, becomes a challenge. The use of eye-tracking devices associated with virtual keyboards can solve this issue, however, the difficulty for choosing the characters could derail this solution. This research had the purpose of studying, conceiving, implementing and testing communication alternatives using eyetracking, which wouldn’t demand effort to choose characters with precision. The solutions were conceived based on patterns of eye movements. During tests, it was noticed that the writing speed had to be improved, and to achieve it, an autocomplete feature has been added to the application. An implementation is currently functional, grouping the best decisions and insights so far, and according to the stablished requirements. The tool, as it is, can be used with a low-precision eye-tracking camera, achieving acceptable levels of writing speed and a high learning curve.
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RAMOS , Guilherme M. A. ; SALES , Victor O. N. ; TEIXEIRA, Cesar A. C.. Computational Tool to Support Communication for People with Extreme Motor Impairment. In: WORKSHOP DE FERRAMENTAS E APLICAÇÕES - SIMPÓSIO BRASILEIRO DE SISTEMAS MULTIMÍDIA E WEB (WEBMEDIA) , 2016, Teresina. Anais [...]. Porto Alegre: Sociedade Brasileira de Computação, 2016 . p. 103-106. ISSN 2596-1683.