chapter  23
26 Pages

Visual, Tactile, and Multimodal Information Processing

This chapter will discuss the most, and one of the least, frequently employed sensory channels in current

interface design: vision and touch. Foveal vision1 in particular continues to be relied on heavily in display

design, mostly because it affords a higher rate of information transfer than other sensory channels

(Sorkin, 1987). Visual representations appear to be well-suited for conveying large amounts of

complex detailed information, especially in the spatial domain. They also allow for permanent presen-

tation, which affords delayed and prolonged attending. However, in many environments, overreliance

on, and the inappropriate design of, foveal visual displays has resulted in data overload and related break-

downs in attention management and human-machine interaction.