ECTkeyboard - Program working modes
Program working modes
The user can choose one of 10 different working modes of ECTkeyboard in accordance with their own preferences and motor activity level. The working mode can be chosen in the Start drop-down menu. Let’s look closer at the working modes of the program.
Mode 0 – (Manual Click). In this mode, the user can select a symbol from the virtual keyboard by using cursor keys. After choosing the desired symbol, the user has to press a button, which was previously selected as the symbol confirmation button. The selected symbol (character or letter) appears in the text output window, allowing the user to choose the following symbol.
Mode 0A – (Manual Hold Straight). This working mode is similar to the previous one, and the symbol selection can also be done with cursor keys. The main difference of this mode is that the user has to hold the confirmation button for a predefined period of time in order to type a symbol. In this working mode, the cursor will appear on the opposite side after reaching the border of the virtual keyboard (in the same row during the horizontal selection or in the same column during the vertical selection).
Mode 0B – (Manual Hold). As in 0A working mode, the user has to hold the confirmation key for a predefined period of time. After reaching the border of the virtual keyboard during horizontal movement, the cursor will appear in the next or the previous row (it depends on the direction of symbols iteration). After reaching the border of the virtual keyboard during vertical movement, the cursor will appear on the opposite side in the next or the previous column.
Mode 1 – (Scanning Row/Cell). A coordinate scanning mode. In this mode, the user has to select a highlighted row (iteration goes from top to bottom) and then a required symbol (from left to right) (see fig. 15).
Mode 1B – (Scanning Column/Cell). A coordinate scanning mode. In this mode, the user has to select a highlighted column (iteration goes from left to right) and then a required symbol (from top to bottom) (see fig. 16).
Mode 2 – (Scanning List Horizontal). A step-by-step working mode. In this mode, the keys of the virtual keyboard are highlighted one by one from left to right, changing the row when the cursor reaches the border of the virtual keyboard (see fig. 17). This step-by-step mode is the slowest mode of the program.
Mode 2B – (Scanning List Vertical). A step-by-step working mode. In this mode, the keys of the virtual keyboard are highlighted one by one from top to bottom, changing the column when the cursor reaches the border of the virtual keyboard (see fig. 18).
Letter-by-letter scanning modes (2 and 2B) are recommended for visually impaired people or patients with undue fatigability. It’s also recommended to enable the current symbol thumbnail window for such modes (Set value 1 for parameter 161 in the settings window of the program) and choose a proper thumbnail size. Even though modes 2 and 2B are the slowest modes of the program, usage of each of them allows patients to reduce strain to their eyes, making it possible to prolong working time with the program without interruptions.
Mode 3 – (Select Half). The separating working mode. When this mode is enabled, the virtual keyboard is divided into two parts, and each of those parts is alternately highlighted (see fig. 19). When the user chooses a part that contains a required symbol or character, that part is also divided into two alternately highlighted fragments. This division happens one after another until the user selects only one required symbol.
Mode 4 – (Gaze Arrows). This working mode requires an eye-tracking device. When the user is looking right, left, up, or down, a special pointer in the form of an aim moves correspondingly (see fig. 20). The progress bar becomes full, and when it reaches the right border, a selected symbol is added to the text output window. When the pointer is moving to another character, this timer starts to get full from the very beginning.
Mode 5 – (Gaze Mouse). This working mode requires an eye-tracking device. The eye-tracking system identifies the current state of the user’s eyes, and the special algorithm of its software part makes it possible to identify the direction of the user’s gaze. Thus, the user has to look at the desired symbol of the virtual keyboard for a predefined period of time in order to type it.
Gaze Arrows and Gaze Mouse modes involve different algorithms, which allows ECTkeyboard to work with different models of eye-tracking devices.