Proceedings: GI 2001

An Isometric Joystick as a Pointing Device for Handheld Information Terminals

Miika Silfverberg, Scott MacKenzie, Tatu Kauppinen

Proceedings of Graphics Interface 2001: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 7 - 9 June 2001, 119-126

DOI 10.20380/GI2001.14

  • BibTeX

     title = {An Isometric Joystick as a Pointing Device for Handheld Information Terminals},
     author = {Miika Silfverberg and I. Scott MacKenzie and Tatu Kauppinen},
     booktitle = {Proceedings of the Graphics Interface 2001 Conference, June 7-9 2001, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada},
     url = {},
     year = {2001},
     month = {June},
     pages = {119--126}


Meeting the increasing demand for desktop-like applications on mobile products requires powerful interaction techniques. One candidate is GUI-style point-and-click interaction using an integrated pointing device that supports handheld use. We tested an isometric joystick for this purpose. Two prototypes were built. They were designed for thumb operation and included a separate selection button. Twelve participants performed point-and-select tasks. We tested both one-handed and two-handed interaction, and selection using the separate selection button and the joystick's integrated press-to-select feature. A notebook configuration served as a reference. Results for the handheld conditions, both one-handed and two-handed, were just slightly off those for the notebook condition, suggesting that an isometric joystick is suitable as a pointing device for handheld terminals. Inadvertent selection while moving the pointer yielded high error rates for all conditions using press-to-select. A separate select button is therefore needed to ensure accurate selection.