User independent gesture interaction for small handheld devices

Sanna Kallio, Juha Kela, Panu Korpipää, Jani Mäntyjärvi

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    34 Citations (Scopus)


    Accelerometer-based gesture recognition facilitates a complementary interaction modality for controlling mobile devices and home appliances. Using gestures for the task of home appliance control requires use of the same device and gestures by different persons, i.e. user independent gesture recognition. The practical application in small embedded low-resource devices also requires high computational performance. The user independent gesture recognition accuracy was evaluated with a set of eight gestures and seven users, with a total of 1120 gestures in the dataset. Twenty-state continuous HMM yielded an average of 96.9% user independent recognition accuracy, which was cross-validated by leaving one user in turn out of the training set. Continuous and discrete five-state HMM computational performances were compared with a reference test in a PC environment, indicating that discrete HMM is 20% faster. Computational performance of discrete five-state HMM was evaluated in an embedded hardware environment with a 104 MHz ARM-9 processor and Symbian OS. The average recognition time per gesture calculated from 1120 gesture repetitions was 8.3 ms. With this result, the computational performance difference between the compared methods is considered insignificant in terms of practical application. Continuous HMM is hence recommended as a preferred method due to its better suitability for a continuous-valued signal, and better recognition accuracy. The results suggest that, according to both evaluation criteria, HMM is feasible for practical user independent gesture control applications in mobile low-resource embedded environments.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)505-524
    Number of pages20
    JournalInternational Journal of Pattern Recognition and Artificial Intelligence
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2006
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • human computer interaction
    • input technology
    • mobile devices
    • gesture recognition
    • gesture control
    • user interfaces
    • user interaction technology
    • pointing
    • multimodal interaction
    • accelerometer


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