Dasher: zoom, zoom

This entry originally appeared on my disability blog, I hate stairs.

If you read my last post, you know that I’m in the market for an on-screen keyboard. I briefly discussed a program called KeyStrokes. The only problem with KeyStrokes is that it is incredibly expensive. Fortunately, Vocational Rehabilitation might purchase it for me since it will help me with school.

However, I just found a program called Dasher. Dasher is a radical experiment in on-screen typing. Words cannot sufficiently describe the mechanics of the interface. A video is in order. (I’m sorry, the quality didn’t turn out very well.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HiQe4LUZ_Rs

Perhaps the best way to explain what you just saw is by using the same analogy that the Dasher website uses. The interface works like a dictionary. Once you go into a letter, such as S in our example, you then look for the second letter, then the third, and so on. The process continues until you finish typing. I’m actually using it right now. I’ve typed the entire post thus far without stopping. It literally keeps on going and going. Quite amazing.

I think this alternative has potential. I can see myself becoming more proficient with this interface, as opposed to a more traditional point and click method. Plus, it’s available for Windows as well as Mac. And, oh yeah, did I mention it’s free? I mean, you really can’t beat free.

Anyway, I’m going to remain on the lookout for other adaptive technology. If you know of any typing solutions, let me know.

Cheers.