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Analysis of Volumetric Tactile Symbols Produced With 3D Printing

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Executive Summary

The morphological elements of design used for designing tactile maps and symbols for visually impaired users are points, linear, and areal elements. One of the main characteristics of these elements is their two-dimensional and graphic nature. However, since three-dimensional design came to be a fourth group of elements, volumetric elements, has come into use. The key questions of this paper are: Is it possible to extend the range of a discriminatable set of symbols by using volumetric elements with height contrast extended in the Z axis? Can some formal variations of these volumetric symbols be distinguished using the sense of touch? The results of this paper show that some tactile symbols with simple volumetric forms are easily recognizable using the sense of touch.

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