Systematic Movements in Haptic Search: Spirals, Zigzags, and Parallel Sweeps


Movement ways were investigated during a one-handed haptic search task in that blindfolded-sighted participants used either one or 5 fingers to search out a landmark on an unstructured tactile map. Search theory predicts that systematic methods, like spirals, zigzags, and parallel sweeps, ought to be a lot of prevalent when the searcher's detection radius is tiny (one finger) and fewer common when the detection radius is massive (five fingers). As predicted, systematic strategies were additional common in one-finger than five-finger search. Participants were in a position to take advantage of the larger detection radius throughout five-finger searches to detect targets with any of their fingers, and in one-finger search used additional systematic methods. For the foremost half, participants' fingers moved together during 5-finger search, expanding and moving quickly when trying for search targets/distractors, and contracting and moving slowly when examining search targets/distractors. There was no proof of fingers being used as spatial anchors or other independent finger movements in 5-finger search. While targets might be found with any fingers, examination was primarily accomplished using the index and middle fingers. Overall, these results indicate that untrained sighted participants can use optimal systematic ways throughout haptic search, and this behavior is appropriately modulated by detection radius.

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