The Influence of the Manner of Grasping a White Cane on the Ability of Visually Impaired People to Perceive the Texture of Objects

  • Kiyohiko NunokawaEmail author
  • Manabu Chikai
  • Kouki Doi
  • Shuichi Ino
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 876)


This study examined the relationship between a surface’s texture (i.e., the particle size) and the perception of its roughness obtained from a white cane. The perception of roughness was measured by a magnitude estimation method with nine visually impaired people who used white canes. Their audiovisual information was restricted with eye masks and earmuffs. The perceived texture was investigated with three different styles of grasping the white cane: the index finger grasp, pencil grasp, and thumb grasp. Participants estimated the roughness of 18 waterproof abrasive papers with different particle sizes (6.7 to 279 μm). Because the exponent for this relationship was almost 0.35 for all three grasping styles when the particle size was small, it can be concluded that a small increase in the particle size causes a significant increase in the perceived roughness.


White cane Visually impaired people Texture Manner of grasping Magnitude estimation 



This work was supported by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science’s KAKENHI grant numbers JP16H03753, JP17K18457 and JP18K18698.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kiyohiko Nunokawa
    • 1
    • 4
    Email author
  • Manabu Chikai
    • 2
  • Kouki Doi
    • 3
  • Shuichi Ino
    • 2
    • 4
  1. 1.School of Human and Social SciencesTokyo International UniversityKawagoeJapan
  2. 2.Department of Information and SupportNational Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and TechnologyTsukubaJapan
  3. 3.Department of Education InformationNational Institute of Special Needs EducationYokosukaJapan
  4. 4.Graduate School of Systems and Information EngineeringUniversity of TsukubaTsukubaJapan

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