Improving Support of Conversations by Enhancing Mobile Computer Input

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Lyons, Kenton Michael
Starner, Thad
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Mobile computing is becoming one of the most widely adopted technologies. There are 1.3 billion mobile phone subscribers worldwide, and the current generation of phones offers substantial computing ability. Furthermore, mobile devices are increasingly becoming integrated into everyday life. With the huge popularity in mobile computing, it is critical that we examine the human-computer interaction issues for these devices and explicitly explore supporting everyday activities. In particular, one very common and important activity of daily life I am interested in supporting is conversation. Depending on job type, office works can spend up to 85\% of their time in interpersonal communication. In this work, I present two methods that improve a user's ability to enter information into a mobile computer in conversational situations. First I examine the Twiddler, a keyboard that has been adopted by the wearable computing community. The Twiddler is a mobile one-handed chording keyboard with a keypad similar to a mobile phone. The second input method is dual-purpose speech, a technique designed to leverage a user's conversational speech. A dual-purpose speech interaction is one where speech serves two roles; it is socially appropriate and meaningful in the context of a human-to-human conversation and provides useful input to a computer. A dual-purpose speech application listens to one side of a conversation and provides beneficial services to the user. Together these input methods provide a user the ability to enter information while engaged in conversation in a mobile setting.
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