Tacticycle: A Tactile Display for Supporting Tourists on a Bicycle Trip

Poppinga, Benjamin and Pielot, Martin and Boll, Susanne
Cycling is a common leisure time sports in touristic regions. For us it was the question how tourists actually find their paths in the area and what kind of navigation aids might be helpful to them. In a requirements study on a touristic island we learned that tourists rather explore the environment spontaneously than efficiently navigating from on place to another such as the beach or the light house, and just cycle on without much map or navigation aid. While exploring the area, the cyclists however, sometimes lose their orientation which they compensate for by accepting detours. We designed and developed an orientation aid, Tacticycle that does not influence the cycling experience but improve the orientation and awareness of the overall direction. In order to ensure the cyclists' safety two vibrotactile actuators are used to indicate directions and announce the presence of interesting places. In two field studies we showed that despite the accuracy of the indicated direction being rather coarse, the tactile user interface allows cyclists to reach a presented destination easily. The visitor of the demo can experience a virtual cycling tour supported by the Tacticycle demonstrator.
09 / 2009
Haptic, Audio and Visual Interfaces for Maps and Location Based Services