Design

Which cap provides the most traction?

I just read an amazing story about how researchers at the University of Utah have been studying devices on steering wheels that would help the hearing impaired drive a car. The driver's index fingertips rest on two ThinkPad TrackPoint caps that move left or right by a millimeter to indicate which way to turn. GPS data provides the relevant data. I love this idea. They used the cat tongue version for their prototype, I assume due to the maximum amount of traction they offer. The term traction seems to fit perfectly in this scenario. The findings of the research project will be presented tomorrow at the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society's 54th annual meeting in San Francisco. You can read more about this project here , or watch a related video on YouTube. Congratulations to the research team that developed this innovative concept.

David Hill

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