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# A small-scale demonstration of the IVEO Learning System

Module by: Richard Baldwin. E-mail the author

Summary:

The IVEO Hands-on-Learning System teaches using touch, sound, and sight combined. This method utilizes any or all three learning modalities to help students learn faster and retain information longer, meanwhile, making learning more fun and interactive.

It may not be practical for you to get a hands-on demonstration. This module explains how you might be able to create your own small-scale demonstration at little or no cost.

## Preface

### General

This module is part of a collection of modules designed to make physics concepts accessible to blind students.

See http://cnx.org/content/col11294/latest/ for the main page of the collection and http://cnx.org/content/col11294/latest/#cnx_sidebar_column for the table of contents for the collection.

The collection is intended to supplement but not to replace the textbook in an introductory course in high school or college physics.

According to the manufacturer , "The IVEO Hands-on-Learning System teaches using touch, sound, and sight combined. This method utilizes any or all three learning modalities to help students learn faster and retain information longer, meanwhile, making learning more fun and interactive."

Unfortunately, it may not be practical for you to get a hands-on demonstration. This module explains how you might be able to create your own small-scale demonstration at little or no cost.

### Prerequisites

In addition to an Internet connection and a browser, you will need the following tools (as a minimum) to work through the exercises in these modules:

The minimum prerequisites for understanding the material in these modules include:

### Viewing tip

I recommend that you open another copy of this document in a separate browser window and use the following links to easily find and view the figures and listings while you are reading about them.

#### Listings

• Listing 1 . Code requiring changes.
• Listing 2 . Complete listing of the program named Svg23.java.
• Listing 3 . Batch file to compile and run the program named Svg23.java.

### Supplemental material

I recommend that you also study the other lessons in my extensive collection of online programming tutorials. You will find a consolidated index at www.DickBaldwin.com .

## Discussion

### Creation of tactile graphics

The module titled Manual Creation of Tactile Graphics at http://cnx.org/content/m38546/latest/ explained how to create tactile graphics from svg files that I will provide.

Normally in these modules, I provide the SVG files that you need to create tactile graphic. However, in this module, you will create your own SVG file by editing, compiling and running a program that I will provide named Svg23.java .

### What is the IVEO Hands-on-Learning System ?

#### A disclaimer

I have no affiliation with ViewPlus Technologies Inc. , the manufacturer of the IVEO system, other than being an acquaintance and admirer of Dr. John Gardner, President and Chief Technical Officer of the company. However, as an independent observer, I believe that IVEO is a great system and I wish it were possible for every student to have access to such a system.

The words that you see here are my words, except for a few words that I copied from the ViewPlus website and presented in quotation marks earlier .

#### A description by the manufacturer

I will begin by referring you to an article written by John Gardner titled Accessing Graphical Information with IVEO SVG at http://www.access2science.com/jagqn/iveo.html . I recommend that you read that article first and then come back and finish reading this module.

#### The component parts

If I understand it correctly, a complete IVEO System consists of the following components:

In this module, I will assume that you have the necessary computer. I will also assume that you don't have a suitable graphics embossing machine but instead you have a friendly sighted assistant who is willing to manually emboss the required printed image for you.

I will assume that you do not have an 11x14 touchpad, but instead you are able to come up with a suitable USB digitizing tablet. I will write this module around the use of a rather antiquated Wacom 5.0 x 3.62-inch digitizing tablet that I have owned for quite a few years. Your digitizing tablet will probably be a different size, so I will explain how to accommodate the difference is size.

I will also assume that you can download and install the free Inkscape program from http://inkscape.org/download/ . That program will be needed to flip and print an SVG file to produce a mirror image that your assistant can manually emboss from the back side.

#### Brief operational description

The operation of the IVEO System essentially consists of the following steps. These steps assume that your hardware and software system has been installed and tested.

• Open the SVG file in the IVEO Viewer
• Make adjustments, if necessary, in the Page Setup item on the File menu to specify the size of the page containing the drawing.
• Print the drawing from the File menu on an embossing graphic printer.
• Place the embossed graphic image on the touchpad and clamp it in position.
• Press Ctrl+U and step through a spoken process of calibrating the touchpad with the current image.
• Explore the embossed graphic image with your fingers, pressing with a single finger on those features of the embossed image that interest you. If you press on a feature and you hear spoken information about that feature, press Ctrl+d and you may or may not hear additional information about the feature. This will depend on whether additional information was provided by the author of the SVG file.
• Exercise other features, such as a feature that allows you to zoom in on specific areas of the image.

Since I am assuming that you don't have access to either a touchpad or an embossing graphics printer, I will show you how to work around some of these steps. However, even with the workarounds, you should still be able to get a feel for the behavior of the system.

### A program to create a drawing

A complete Java program named Svg23.java is provided in Listing 2 .

The purpose of this program is to demonstrate how to use my graphics library named SvgLib21 (see http://cnx.org/content/m39607/latest/#Listing_26 ) to create an SVG file containing a simple drawing that can be used with a common USB digitizer tablet and the IVEO System .

All dimensions in the program are written in terms of the variables named width and height . Therefore, the only change that that you should need to make is to replace the dimensions of my digitizer tablet with the dimensions of your digitizer tablet in the code fragment shown in Listing 1 .

Having done that, you should be able to compile and run the program and it should produce an output file named Svg23.svg .

#### Listing 1: Code requiring changes.

    //Change the following two values to the width and
double width = 5.0;
double height = 3.62;

The image

For the benefit of your assistant who will emboss your image, Figure 1 shows a reduced-size version of the image in the output SVG file for the dimensions of my digitizer tablet. The image should be very similar for the dimensions of your digitizer tablet.

Description of the image

For your benefit, the image consists of a rectangle drawn with a thin line that is the same size as the active area on my digitizer tablet (5.0 x 3.62 inches) .

A circle with a radius of one inch is centered in the left half of the drawing.

A triangle, with its base parallel to the horizontal axis, is horizontally centered in the right half of the drawing.

A diagonal line extends from the lower left corner to the upper right corner of the drawing.

Some text shows in the upper-left corner of the drawing.

There is a small circle below the triangle, which I will refer to as a pseudo-text marker . I will explain the purpose of the pseudo-text marker later.

Although the dimensions of your digitizer tablet will probably be different than mine, the overall layout of the shapes in your SVG file should be very similar to mine.

### Instructions

In this section, I will provide instructions and explain the steps that you and your assistant will need to take in order to create your own small-scale demonstration of the IVEO System .

#### Acquire a USB digitizer tablet

I put this instruction at the beginning of the list because without a USB digitizer tablet (or something to suitably replace the touchpad) , there can be no demonstration. Assuming that you don't have such a tablet, you should check with your friends, take a look on Ebay, etc.

(I will point out, however, that if you have low vision but can still see the computer screen and can use a mouse, you may be able to create this demonstration without the need for a digitizer tablet.)

The brand and size of the tablet isn't terribly important, although the larger the tablet, the closer your small-scale demonstration will come to representing the real thing.

It is critical that the tablet connects to the computer via a USB port. It is also critical that the operation of the tablet emulates a mouse. By this, I mean that when you touch the tactile image on the tablet in a given location, the effect must be the same as if you were to use a mouse and click the corresponding location on the image on the screen.

Some tablets work only with a stylus, some work from either a finger touch or a stylus, and possibly some only work from a finger touch. Once again, this isn't too important, but the use of a tablet that works from a finger touch will be closer to the real thing than one that requires a stylus. (Mine requires a stylus.)

#### Create the SVG file

Once you have acquired your digitizer tablet and you know the dimensions of the active area on your tablet, it is time to create an SVG file that you can use for testing.

Copy the Java code from Listing 2 into a text file with the name Svg23.java . Make the changes shown in Figure 1 to replace the dimensions of my tablet with the dimensions of your tablet. Note that dimensions are in inches.

Copy the text from Listing 3 into a text file with the name Svg23.bat .

Using the two files listed above, along with the instructions in the module titled If You Can Imagine T, You Can Draw It using SVG , and my SVG graphics library program named SvgLib21 at http://cnx.org/content/m39607/latest/#Listing_26 , compile and run the program named Svg23.java , producing an output file named Svg23.svg .

#### Install Inkscape

This would be a good time for you to download and install the Inkscape program. You will be needing it shortly so that your assistant can

• create a mirror image of the image in the SVG file, and
• print the mirror image for manual embossing.

#### Print a mirror image

##### Note:

The Inkscape program is a relatively complex program, and an inexperienced user could easily damage or modify an SVG file. Therefore, the instructions in this section should be performed using a copy of the file named Svg23.svg .

Ask your assistant to start the Inkscape program and to open a copy of the file named Svg23.svg in that program.

• Press Ctrl+Alt+A to prepare the image for a horizontal flip. Your assistant should see a bunch of little arrows on the screen indicating that all of the objects in the image have been selected.
• Pull down the Object menu and select Flip Horizontal . Your assistant should see the image flipped from its normal state to a mirror image of its normal state.
• Press Ctrl+P to cause the flipped image to be printed.
• Press Ctrl+Q to quit. When the opportunity presents itself, click the button labeled Close without saving ..

The printed output

Your assistant should see the mirror image of an image that is very similar to Figure 1 . However, the overall size of the image will be different from Figure 1 due to the differing sizes of our respective tablets.

All of the shapes in the image should be contained inside a rectangle that is very close to the size of the active area on your tablet. If that is not the case, something is wrong and you will need to backtrack and fix the problem.

#### Manually emboss the image

Ask your assistant to use a tracing wheel or something similar to manually emboss the printed mirror image. Ask him or her to try to emboss the heavy lines as double lines to make them easier for you to locate and identify with your fingers.

A text block

There will be some text in the upper-right corner of the mirror image. It won't be necessary to emboss the characters in that text. Simply emboss some marks that will alert you to the location of the text.

A pseudo-text marker

There is also a small circle underneath the triangle. (Depending on the size of your digitizer tablet, the circle may actually appear on top of the triangle.) Once again, it won't be necessary to emboss that circle as a circle. Simply emboss an X there so that you will be able to discern the location of that circle. (This is the pseudo-text marker that I referred to earlier . I will explain its purpose later.)

Attach the image to the digitizer tablet

Once the image has been embossed, trim the image very carefully at the rectangular border. Using masking tape or something similar turn the image over with the ink side down and affix it to the active area of your tablet. Be very careful because proper alignment is critical at this point.

Ask your assistant to somehow mark the upper-left and lower-right corners of the rectangle so that you can discern them later when times comes to calibrate the touchpad.

#### Load the SVG file into the IVEO Viewer

Start the IVEO Viewer program running. When it is running and ready for action, you should hear a welcome message.

Open the SVG file

Press Ctrl+O to open the SVG file. Navigate the disk and open the file named Svg23.svg . When the file opens in IVEO, you should hear something like the following:

"Document title description of the document"

The page setup operation

Open the File menu and select the item named Page Setup .

Select Letter (Landscape) if your rectangle is wider than it is tall. Select Letter (Portrait) if your rectangle is taller than it is wide.

Then click the OK button.

You may be asked "Do you want to fit the image to the new page size?" If so, click the Yes button.

You will be asked to "Touch top left corner of the image."

At this point, you should touch the top left corner of the image that is taped onto your tablet. Follow the verbal instruction and press the space bar to confirm.

You will then be asked to "Touch bottom right corner of the image." Touch the bottom right corner of the image that is taped onto your tablet, and press the space bar to confirm.

You should hear "calibration finished."

#### Explore the image with your fingers

You are now ready to begin the exploration of the image using your fingers, or a combination of your fingers and a stylus depending on the kind of tablet that you are using.

##### Note:
Even though you are probably accustomed to exploring with multiple fingers, when time comes to touch an object and elicit a spoken response, you should touch with only one finger. Otherwise the system won't know which touch to pay attention to and you probably won't get the desired result.

Touch the text object

If you touch the area near the upper-left corner that your assistant has identified as containing text, you should hear "This is a text object." If you are interested in doing so, you can locate the code in Listing 2 responsible for this behavior by searching that listing for the matching text.

Touch the circle

Touch anywhere inside the circle in the left half of your image and you should hear "Circle."

Then press Ctrl+d and you should hear "Circle Description of the circle."

In other words, once you touch one of the objects and hear a voice that identifies the object, you can press Ctrl+d to hear more information about the object.

Once again, if you are interested in doing so, you can search for this text in the Java code in Listing 2 and see the code that is responsible for this behavior.

Touch the triangle

If you touch anywhere inside the triangle in the right half of your image, you should hear "Triangle." Pressing Ctrl+d at that point will provide additional information about the triangle.

Touch the pseudo-text marker

If you touch the marker underneath (or perhaps on) the triangle, you should hear "This is pseudo text identified by a text marker."

This is an alternative to actually putting text in the drawing as was done above . This approach can be used to include text in the drawing without allowing the text to cause the drawing to become messy. It is useful when there is a lot text that needs to be included in the drawing. It is also useful when two ordinary text objects would overlap.

The downside is that a sighted teacher or a low-vision student can't see the text. It only becomes exposed when the SVG file is processed using the IVEO system .

Touch the line

Try to touch the line that extends from the lower left to the upper right corner of the rectangle. This can sometimes be difficult, particularly if the printed and embossed version of the drawing isn't well registered on the touchpad.

If you succeed in touching the line, you should hear "Diagonal line." Pressing Ctrl+d should then result in a voice saying "Diagonal line Description of diagonal line."

The difficulty of touching the line is one illustration of the need for a large touchpad for use with IVEO. If this same drawing were enlarged to fit on the 11x14 inch IVEO touchpad, the line would be much thicker and easier to touch.

The border rectangle

There is a good possibility that when you attempted to touch the line, you heard "Border rectangle" instead of "Diagonal line." This is because all of the area within the rectangular border not covered by one of the other objects belongs to the rectangular object that forms the border.

If you did hear "Border rectangle" and you were to press Ctrl+d , you should hear "Border rectangle Description of border rectangle."

The document title

If you press the d key at any time, you should hear "Document title Description of the document." This is the same thing that you should have heard when the SVG file was opened in the IVEO Viewer .

### Tactile, audio, and visual information

The words that are spoken when you touch an object or press Ctrl+d are defined by the author of the SVG file when the file is created. The purpose is to provide information that can't easily be provided solely through tactile means.

In other words, there is a limit to the amount of information about a drawing or an image that can be provided solely through touch. For the blind student, IVEO makes it possible to supplement the tactile information with additional information that is delivered by voice. Thus, a blind student has access to both tactile and audible information when exploring the drawing.

If a student has low vision but still has some ability to see the screen, visual information is also presented in the form of the drawing on the screen. The low-vision student may be able to explore the drawing using a mouse and receive the same audible information and may not need a touchpad. Thus, a low-vision student has access to tactile, audible, and visual information.

Not much information in this demonstration file

I was the author of this demonstration SVG file. Because it is a demonstration, I didn't include much real information in the audible realm. My objective was simply to give your an opportunity to see how the system works.

As you read earlier in the article titled Accessing Graphical Information with IVEO SVG , the IVEO System provides some other features as well. However, now that you have reached this point, you can explore those other features on your own. Just remember that some features, such as zooming for example, probably can't be demonstrated with a small digitizing tablet.

## Resources

I will publish a module containing consolidated links to resources on my Connexions web page and will update and add to the list as additional modules in this collection are published.

## Complete program listings

Listing 2 contains the Java code to produce the SVG file needed for this demonstration.

### Listing 2: Complete listing of the program named Svg23.java.

/*File Svg23.java,
The purpose of this program is to demonstrate how to use
my graphics library named SvgLib21 to create a simple
SVG file that can be used with a small Wacom digitizer
tablet with the IVEO learning system.

All dimensions are written in terms of width and height.
Therefore, the only change that should be needed is to
change the hard-coded values for width and height in
inches where indicated.
*********************************************************/
import java.io.*;
import org.jdom.*;

public class Svg23{
public static void main(String[] args){

//DO NOT MODIFY ANY OF THE CODE ABOVE THIS LINE.
//##################################################//
//ONLY THE CODE BELOW THIS LINE CAN BE MODIFIED

/**
*CREATE A DRAWING CANVAS
*This must be the first statement that you write in
*the program and it must appear only once.
*The following statement creates a canvas that is
*8.5x11 inches in size in a portrait layout. The
*size was chosen to match my printer page size.
*I will actually restrict the size of my drawing
*to 5.0x3.62 inches by drawing a border rectangle of
*that size and then drawing everything inside that
*rectangle. This size was chosen to match the size
*of my Wacom digitizer pad. The title is "Document
*Title", which will be spoken by IVEO when the
*SVG file is loaded into IVEO.
*/
Element svg = SvgLib21.makeSvg(ns,
"Document Title",
8.5,
11
);

//DO NOT MODIFY THE FOLLOWING STATEMENT
//This statement must immediately follow the call to
// the makeSvg method above and this statement MUST
// NOT BE MODIFIED.
Document doc = new Document(svg,docType);

/**
*Add a description element to the document.
*The description can be spoken in IVEO by pressing
*the d key.
*/
SvgLib21.setDescription(
svg,
ns,
"Description of the document");

//Change the following two values to the width and
double width = 5.0;
double height = 3.62;

/**
*Draw a border rectangle whose size defines the
*working area that will be processed in IVEO. Avoid
*the edges of the page in order to avoid potential
*issues with printing near the edges of the page.
*The lower left corner of this rectangle is located
*at x=1 inch and y=1 inch. The width is 5 inches
*and the height is 3.62 inches. The title is
*"Border rectangle". The title can be spoken in
*IVEO by selecting the object. The default stroke
*width is one pixel. It should be left that way
*to provide for more accurate triming of the printed
*version of the drawing. A printed and embossed
*version of the drawing will be required along with
*the digitizer pad to use this file with IVEO.
*Don't make any changes to the following code.
*/
Element borderRectangle = SvgLib21.makeRect(
svg,
ns,
"Border rectangle",
1.0,
1.0,
width,
height
);

/**
*Add a description element to the border rectangle.
*The description can be spoken in IVEO by first
*selecting the border rectangle and then pressing
*Ctrl+d.
*/
SvgLib21.setDescription(
borderRectangle,
ns,
"Description of borderRectangle");

/**
*Draw a circle with a radius of 1 inch centered in
*the left half of the border rectangle. Remember
*that the border rectangle has been offset by one
*inch in both the horizontal and vertical directions
*to avoid potential printing problems at the edge
*of the paper. The title is "circle".
*Don't make any changes to the following code.
*/
Element theCircle = SvgLib21.makeCircle(svg,
ns,
"circle",
1+width/4,
1+height/2,
1.0
);
/**
*Set the stroke width of the circle to 0.05 inch.
*With the exception of the border rectangle, this
*is probably the minimum width to use for any shape
*to help ensure that you can locate the line with
*/
SvgLib21.setStrokeWidth(theCircle,0.05);

/**
*Add a description element to theCircle.
*/
SvgLib21.setDescription(
theCircle,
ns,
"Description of the circle.");

/**
*Draw a triangle that is centered in the right half
*of the border rectangle.
*/
Element theTriangle = SvgLib21.makePolygon(
svg,
ns,
"triangle",
new double[]{
1+9*width/16,2.0,
1+15*width/16,2.0,
1+3*width/4,height
});
/**
*Set the stroke width of the theTriangle to
*0.05 inch.
*/
SvgLib21.setStrokeWidth(theTriangle,0.05);

/**
*Add a description element to theTriangle.
*/
SvgLib21.setDescription(
theTriangle,
ns,
"Description of the triangle.");

/**
*Draw a line from the lower-left to the upper-right
*corner of the border rectangle.
*/
Element diagonalLine = SvgLib21.makeLine(
svg,
ns,
"Diagonal line",
1.0,
1.0,
1+width,
1+height
);

/**
*Set the stroke width of the diagonal line
*to 0.05 inch.
*/
SvgLib21.setStrokeWidth(diagonalLine,0.05);

/**
*Add a description element to diagonalLine.
*/
SvgLib21.setDescription(
diagonalLine,
ns,
"Description of the diagonal line.");

/**
*Draw text with a size of 20 points and an arial
*font face in the upper-left corner of the drawing.
*/
Element textA = SvgLib21.makeText(
svg,
ns,
1+width/16,
1+height-0.32,
"arial",
20,
"This is a text object."
);

/**
*Draw a circular marker for pseudo-text below
*the theTriangle. The text is spoken in IVEO by
*selecting the marker. The purpose of pseudo-text
*markers is to reduce the clutter and overlap that
*can occur when there is a need for a lot of text
*in the drawing or there is a need for text objects
*that overlap one another.
*/
Element textMarker = SvgLib21.makeCircle(
svg,
ns,
"This is pseudo-text identified by a text marker.",
1+3*width/4,
1+0.2*height,
.125
);

/**
*Set the stroke width of the textMarker to 0.05 inch.
*/
SvgLib21.setStrokeWidth(textMarker,0.05);
/**
*Write the output file
*/
SvgLib21.writePrettyFile("Svg23",doc);

//ONLY THE CODE ABOVE THIS LINE CAN BE MODIFIED
//##################################################//
//DO NOT MODIFY ANY OF THE FOLLOWING CODE.
}//end main
//----------------------------------------------------//

//Create a String variable containing the namespace
// URI to reduce the amount of typing that is required
// later. Note that the variable name is short and
// easy to type.
static String ns = "http://www.w3.org/2000/svg";

//For clarity, create strings containing the name of
// the element that is constrained by the DTD (the
// root element), the Public ID of the DTD, and the
// System ID of the DTD.
static String dtdConstrainedElement = "svg";
static String dtdPublicID = "-//W3C//DTD SVG 1.1//EN";
static String dtdSystemID =
"http://www.w3.org/Graphics/SVG/1.1/DTD/svg11.dtd";

static DocType docType = new DocType(
dtdConstrainedElement,dtdPublicID,dtdSystemID);
}}//end class Svg23

Listing 3 contains the commands for a batch file that can be used, with modifications, to compile and run the program named Svg23.java . See http://cnx.org/content/m39607/latest/ for instructions on how to use the batch file.

### Listing 3: Batch file to compile and run the program named Svg23.java.

cls

set classpath=.;C:\Program Files (x86)\Java\jdom-1.1.1\build\jdom.jar
del *.class
del Svg23.svg
javac SvgLib21.java
javac Svg23.java
java Svg23
start Firefox.exe Svg23.svg
pause

## Miscellaneous

This section contains a variety of miscellaneous information.

### Note:

Housekeeping material
• Module name: A small-scale demonstration of the IVEO Learning System
• File: Phy1006.htm
• Revised: 08/12/11
• Keywords:
• physics
• accessible
• accessibility
• blind
• graph board
• protractor
• refreshable Braille display
• JavaScript
• trigonometry
• digitizer tablet

### Note:

Disclaimers:

Financial : Although the Connexions site makes it possible for you to download a PDF file for this module at no charge, and also makes it possible for you to purchase a pre-printed version of the PDF file, you should be aware that some of the HTML elements in this module may not translate well into PDF.

I also want you to know that I receive no financial compensation from the Connexions website even if you purchase the PDF version of the module.

Affiliations :

I am a professor of Computer Information Technology at Austin Community College in Austin, TX.

I have no affiliation with ViewPlus Technologies, Inc., the manufacturer of the IVEO Hands-on-Learning System.

-end-

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