Touchscreen Input for Users with Hand Tremor

What is Swabbing?

Swabbing is an input that allows users with hand tremor to select a target on touchscreen more accurate despite the jittering hand movement. The users slide their finger towards a target on an edge of the screen. Then, a linear regression is calculated from input points to determine a target. The support from the screen surface, the absence of breaking, and the smoothing effect of linear regression make the selection more accurate.
Basic swabbing input (Note at CHI ’11)
Swabbing input overlay on a touchscreen web browser (Workshop paper at CHI ’13)

The Team

Swabbing is a research project by Chat Wacharamanotham, Alexander Mertens, Martin Kronenbuerger, Christopher Schlick, and Jan Borchers. This project is a collaboration between the Media Computing Group, the Institute of Industrial Engineering and Ergonomics, and the University Hospital Aachen. The team also comprises several thesis students and HiWis:
Alumni: Jan Hurtmanns, Alexandru Popa, Neils Huck, and Zhao He



  • Dennis Kehrig. Swabbing in the Wild - A Longitudinal Study of Touchscreen Input Methods for Users with Hand Tremor. Diplomarbeit, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, June 2013.
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  • Chat Wacharamanotham, Dennis Kehrig, Alexander Mertens, Christopher Schlick and Jan Borchers. Designing a Touchscreen Web Browser for People with Tremors.  In CHI 2013 Workshop on Mobile Accessibility, Workshop Paper, Paris, France, April 2013.
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  • 2012

  • Alexander Mertens, Chat Wacharamanotham, Jan Hurtmanns, Martin Kronenbuerger, Peter H. Kraus, Arndt Hoffmann, Christopher Schlick and Jan Borchers. Model Based Processing of Swabbing Movements on Touch Screens to Improve Accuracy and Efficacy for Information Input of Individuals Suffering from Kinetic Tremor.  In Human -- Computer Systems Interaction: Backgrounds and Applications 2, Advances in Intelligent and Soft Computing, pages 503–522, Springer Berlin Heidelberg, August 2012.
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  • Alexandru Popa. Tracking Hand Tremor on Touchscreen. Master's Thesis, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, March 2012.
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  • 2011

  • Alexander Mertens, Chatchavan Wacharamanotham, Jan Hurtmanns, Niels Huck and Jörg Schulz and. SWABBING: Touchscreen-basierte Mensch-Rechner-Interaktion für Personen mit Tremorerkrankungen des Hand-Arm-Apparats. In das wissenschaftliche Programm des Kongresses der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurologie (DGN), Poster, September 2011.
    BibTeX Entry
  • Chat Wacharamanotham, Jan Hurtmanns, Alexander Mertens, Martin Kronenbuerger, Christopher Schlick and Jan Borchers. Evaluating Swabbing: a Touchscreen Input Method for Elderly Users with Tremor.  In CHI '11: Proceedings of the 29th Annual SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, pages 623–626, ACM Press, New York, NY, USA, May 2011.
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  • Jan Hurtmanns. Swabbing: Touchscreen Input for Users with Hand Tremor. Bachelor's Thesis, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, March 2011.
    BibTeX Entry

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