Dr Jason Alexander, now teaching at the University of Lancaster, and part of the team, describes their approach: ‘once we established that you could interact using your leg, we produced a lot of algorithms to detect how far forward, how fast, and what angle from a straightforward position you had moved your leg. Then we translated these into gestures we could use for interactions.’
Their first significant insight, Alexander continues, ‘was that people can regularly and accurately kick in five different directions and at 180o in front of them. So if you are creating a menu, you shouldn’t put more than five items in that menu, otherwise people will struggle to select the correct item.’ Their second finding was whether people could vary the velocity of their kick to scroll around a screen. Their results showed two options. People weren’t very good at kicking at different speeds, but could kick accurately either slowly or fast.