The Fitaly One-Finger Keyboard

Eliminating Hand Movement

While the reduction in pen travel is a significant achievement, the Fitaly achieves even more far-ranging improvements in the reduction of hand movement.

When using a pen, small movements of the pen are made with flexions of the two fingers holding the pen, while the rest of the hand remains immobile, with the little finger rested on the screen. Larger key travels involve the hand (the little finger) sliding horizontally on the screen. In practice, horizontal travel of up to 2 keys and vertical up to 3 keys does not involve any hand movement.

Eliminating hand movement is especially important since transitions that involve hand movement are very slow - three or four time slower -, much less accurate, and more error-prone as the hand needs to recalibrate upon landing to the new position.

The example given below shows what is involved in typing the word transpose on the Fitaly and on the Qwerty. Letter transitions that require hand movement are shown in red. The Fitaly requires no hand movement:

The analysis of hand movement, based on the Brown corpus shows the reduction achieved by the Fitaly to be quite general. A reduction by a factor of at least 4 is obtained compared to the Qwerty keyboard. Typically, with the Fitaly keyboard, a hand movement is only required every fifth keystroke, and hand movement is virtually eliminated in the case of prose involving few numbers and few special characters.

Next: Conclusion on Fitaly for One-Finger Entry
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