Longitudinal Study of Two Virtual Cursors for People With Motor Impairments: A Performance and Satisfaction Analysis on Web Navigation
Pérez López, Juan Eduardo
Arrue Recondo, Myriam
Valencia Parafita, Xabier
Abascal González, Julio
MetadataShow full item record
IEEE Access 8 : 110381-110396 (2020)
The lack of dexterity in the upper limbs of people with motor impairments may prevent the use of standard pointing devices, such as mice, to access graphical user interfaces. In these cases, pointing and clicking are usually performed by means of alternative devices such as joysticks, trackballs or standard keyboards. However, target acquisition can still be challenging for this group of people due to their physical condition. Based on previous works, we developed two virtual cursors: the novel cross cursor and the standard area cursor. They are devoted to assist two different groups of users with link selection within web pages: keyboard-only users, and joystick and trackball users, respectively. Both virtual cursors have been evaluated and compared with the original unassisted cursor in a longitudinal study. Eight people with motor impairments participated in an unsupervised experiment from their own personal computers at home. For a period of six weeks, each participant used both a virtual cursor and the original unassisted cursor to freely navigate the Web, and to perform predefined target acquisition tasks. Interaction data was automatically logged throughout the study along with subjective assessments concerning the usability of the virtual cursor being tested. Results show significant improvements for both virtual cursors in six of the seven cursor parameters studied, albeit with performance variations between some participants. The virtual cursors were extensively used for free web navigation and in their subjective assessments both were positively endorsed by participants who also put forward improvement suggestions for future developments.