FOCL, a probabilistic character layout strategy for mobile text entry

by Bellman, Thomas Jeffrey

Abstract (Summary)
There is an increasingly strong demand on mobile communications devices, such as pagers and cellular phones, to support full-fledged text-entry. In providing text-messaging features, manufacturers have, thus far, failed to consider the unique restrictions of the mobile domain, in particular its limited input and output bandwidth and limited physical space. The result is that interaction is crude and demanding of the user. In one technique, the user moves a cursor around an on-screen character set and selects letters one at a time. This research focuses on improving entry speeds with this technique. By applying statistical data of English to the task of rearranging the character layout after each character entered, we achieved a significantly superior result compared to a fixed layout, after two design iterations. The successful design is one whose Iayout is partly fixed, and partly fluctuating, combining the advantages of both. It is thus dubbed a hybrid layout. The general technique is calIed the Fluctuating Optimal Character Layout strategy, or FOCL.
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Source Type:Master's Thesis



Date of Publication:01/01/1998

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