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System Design Considerations for Graphics Input Devices

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000131258D
Original Publication Date: 1978-Nov-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Nov-10
Document File: 12 page(s) / 44K

Publishing Venue

Software Patent Institute

Related People

Mark Ohlson: AUTHOR [+3]

Abstract

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THIS DOCUMENT IS AN APPROXIMATE REPRESENTATION OF THE ORIGINAL.

This record contains textual material that is copyright ©; 1978 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc. All rights reserved. Contact the IEEE Computer Society http://www.computer.org/ (714-821-8380) for copies of the complete work that was the source of this textual material and for all use beyond that as a record from the SPI Database.

System Design Considerations for Graphics Input Devices

Mark Ohlson

Texas A&M University

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A simple classification of graphics input requirements relates types of information to types of devices, giving the system designer a framework for overall design decisions.

The development and utility of computer graphics applications have been greatly increased by interactive program communication. The quality of the interaction between user and program depends on available input and feedback devices, which should be well suited to the user's communication needs. The universe of discourse in computer graphics is, broadly, the set of visual objects on one, two, or three dimensions that can be represented on two- dimensional media, independently of whether they actually exist or have counterparts in the real world. Some common modes of communication set the needs of graphic I/O equipment apart from the needs of other interactive applications; at the same time, some needs are common for all interactive work.

The variety of physical input devices available to the graphics system designer can be compared and contrasted according to their functionality, complexity, precision, and potential modes of use. The structure of input devices tends, of course, to reflect human modes of expression. For example, humans commonly communicate position in a particular space or identify objects in that space by pointing, and graphics input devices are designed to implement pointing in ways that are feasible from an implementation standpoint and that please the user by reflecting his natural communication tendencies. The reason for pleasing the user is economic as well as aesthetic. To the extent that an input device satisfies the user's natural modes of expression in a particular activity, he will view his interaction with the computer as being more natural, and will adapt more easily to a computer graphic environment while thinking and reacting in terms of the application environment. Consequently, he will be able to do more productive and hence more cost-effective work.

Attempts to provide users with natural input devices have led to the development of prolific quantities of gadgets, each with particular (and sometimes peculiar) installation and use requirements. The graphics system designer has a complex task. In order to make judgments for a system design, he must understand functional ret quirements, precision requirements, cost considerations, and the elements of user satisfaction. The firs...