UIST2.0 Archive - 20 years of UIST
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electromyography (emg)

In Proceedings of UIST 2009
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Enabling always-available input with muscle-computer interfaces (p. 167-176)

Abstract plus

Previous work has demonstrated the viability of applying offline analysis to interpret forearm electromyography (EMG) and classify finger gestures on a physical surface. We extend those results to bring us closer to using muscle-computer interfaces for always-available input in real-world applications. We leverage existing taxonomies of natural human grips to develop a gesture set covering interaction in free space even when hands are busy with other objects. We present a system that classifies these gestures in real-time and we introduce a bi-manual paradigm that enables use in interactive systems. We report experimental results demonstrating four-finger classification accuracies averaging 79% for pinching, 85% while holding a travel mug, and 88% when carrying a weighted bag. We further show generalizability across different arm postures and explore the tradeoffs of providing real-time visual feedback.