Dasher Special Needs Guide

Dasher Special Needs Guide

David J.C. MacKay

January 25, 2006

Dasher can be driven in many ways. This guide helps you find which versions of Dasher are most efficient for you.

As of April 2005, the newest versions of Dasher mentioned here are implemented on the Linux platform only. We aim to have them all implemented on all platforms by September 2005.

Dasher is designed on the principle of getting as much information as possible from the gestures you can make. We can get information from whichever of the following is easiest for you:

  1. Continuous gestures (conveyed via a joystick, trackpad, head mouse, or gaze tracker, for example) often achieve the highest rates of writing.
  2. Discrete gestures (switches, button presses) may be able to convey information in three different ways:
(a) The time at which you press a button can convey information. (This idea is used in
grid systems controlled by a single button.)
(b) How long you press a button for can convey information. (This idea is used in Morse
code, where two durations are distinguished.)
(c) The choice of which button you press can convey information. (This idea is used in
ordinary keyboards.)