KPR Research Projects

KPR's product development is a direct outcome of research projects, and we have received over $2.4M in research funding. These grants are most commonly within the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, from the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Department of Education, but we have also been funded by Rehabilitation Engineering Research Centers, the Paralyzed Veterans of America Research Foundation, and other sources.

This page highlights current research and provides a gateway to more detailed information about each project. For a full listing of all of our research publications, visit the Publications page.

Systematic Review of Text Entry Rates

The purpose of this systematic review was to search the available research involving AT control interfaces and conduct a quantitative synthesis of text entry rates associated with common interfaces.

Scanning Project

The scanning project focuses on techniques for enhancing communication rate with single-switch scanning systems. Text generation with such systems can be very slow, often 1 word per minute (wpm) or less. By developing and applying a systematic approach to optimizing a scanning system for an individual user, we expect to provide dramatic improvements in text generation rate. In our Phase I study, 9 single-switch scanning users more than doubled their communication rate, on average, after their systems were adjusted according to our method. We plan to begin Phase II work on this project in early 2015.

AutoIDA Project

The AutoIDA project is an extension of our work on Keyboard Wizard and Pointing Wizard software. While the Wizards are useful ways to determine the best Windows keyboard and mouse settings for a particular user, their use requires the user to spend a few minutes on a specific typing or mousing task presented by the Wizard. With AutoIDA, we are working to identify the optimum settings without requiring a specific task; the AutoIDA software simply examines data collected while the user does normal tasks on their computer. This allows adjustments to the settings to occur seamlessly, with no time or effort required by the user.

We have proof-of-concept AutoIDA prototypes for both keyboard and mouse settings. For mouse settings, use of AutoIDA significantly improved pointing performance, with speed improving by 29.3% with the settings recommended by our software. For more details, see the full manuscript, published in Assistive Technology.

For keyboard settings, results were mixed. On a group basis, across the 10 individuals who received non-default recommendations from AutoIDA, average typing speed and accuracy did not significantly improve. On a single-case basis, however, 4 individuals did benefit from the AutoIDA settings, primarily as a means of reducing typing errors. This study has been accepted for publication by Assistive Technology, pending minor revisions.

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