Predictive Text For People With Disabilities


How Lightkey can be optimized for People With Disabilities?

Lightkey offers an optimized prediction experience for People With Disabilities (PwD’s). Increasing Lightkey's prediction interactively over its accuracy essentially enables users to save as many keystrokes as possible. This kind of functionality would mostly benefit people with disabilities, minimizing the physical aspect of typing. This feature works best with sound assistance for users who focus on their keyboard while typing. This feature is available on all of Lightkey’s editions (including the free edition).

Lightkey Is Built To Fit All Typists

Can Lightkey really help all types of users? This was one of the questions we faced since we started developing Lightkey. And as it often happens when launching “mainstream” technology aiming to solve big problems, we learned that users come in all sizes and shapes. After releasing Lightkey’s earlier editions back in October 2016, we started getting some interesting and unexpected feedback.

It started with a message we received from an occupational therapist who works for a charity that supports people with disabilities. Following a short evaluation and discussing the pros and cons with us, she decided to recommend one of her patients with CP (Cerebral Palsy) to use Lightkey, and then later shared her recommendation with other patients. Since then, we’ve been contacted by a few caregivers working for similar organizations in the UK and in the USA, who also recommend their communities and patients with disabilities to use Lightkey as an assistive technology solution.

As a result, we decided to take it one step further and developed a dedicated feature that optimizes Lightkey’s prediction experience for People With Disabilities.

Delivering A Different Experience For People with Disabilities

Lightkey’s prediction experience is built on the delicate balance between prediction interactivity and accuracy. On the one hand, suggesting predictions for every keystroke requires lots of mental energy to consider every suggestion up to the point that it makes the whole experience counter-productive. On the other hand, suggesting only the 100%-accurate predictions will inevitably limit the number of suggestions, to the point of questioning the need in such a product.

The secret is maintaining the right balance. Based on its real-time analysis of every keystroke, Lightkey will only suggest predictions that are worthy of the user’s time and energy. Behind the scenes, this fine balance relies on the assumption that considering suggestions and typing on the keyboard requires similar amount of energy by the user. However, this assumption is not true for all users – especially not for those with physical disabilities.

In these specific cases, the physical aspect of typing requires more energy than mentally considering a suggestion. Therefore, Lightkey would be more inclined to suggest and hopefully save as many keystrokes as possible, realizing the price of lower accuracy. It doesn’t mean that Lightkey will suggest a prediction for each and every keystroke, but rather change the balance equation when deciding which suggestions are worthy of the user’s attention.

How To Activate This Feature

Optimized prediction experience for people with disabilities can be activated through Lightkey’s Control Center, under Preferences / Prediction tab. This feature is turned off by default.

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