Seasons Greeting from CMU

Got this in the mail today from Randy Bryant.

See the cute heading? That’s EdgeWrite. EdgeWrite is an award-winning accessible handheld and desktop text-entry sstem for users with motor impairments. Developed by Jacob Wobbrock (CMU CS ’06) and SCS Professor Brad Myers, EdgeWrite recognizes letters by the sequence in which the corners of a small square-holed template are hit rather than the shape of the lines connecting the corners. The system is highly adaptable to a variety of devices, including wheelchair joysticks and desktop trackballs. It provides greater ease, stability and accuracy not only for physically disabled users, but also for users facing situational challenges such as trying to write while riding in a vehicle.

Make sense? No, in Singlish then: this is technology to let you write in a moving car. Got one square, your pen hit the wall of the square and the computer know what you write. So you end up writing funny. It is different from PDA, the “graffiti” thing, that recognizes shape. Disabled people can’t write properly shaped alphabets, some can’t hold pen, so can fit this on joystick (neh.. those attached to the wheel chair), then the direction where the joystick is pushed is counted as the same direction of your pen banging the wall.

So, how funny are the characters?

Want to write writing some yourself? Straight from the EdgeWrite homepage, here’s a simple program that you can play with:

zip   EdgeWrite demo (~724KB)
(if the link doesn’t work, go straight to to look for it)

Extract. Run the EdgeWrite.Test.exe program in the dll folder. Have fun!

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