Human Hand Function

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Overview


Human Hand Function is a multidisciplinary book that reviews the sensory and motor aspects of normal hand function from both neurophysiological and behavioral perspectives. Lynette Jones and Susan Lederman present hand function as a continuum ranging from activities that are essentially sensory in nature to those that have a strong motor component. They delineate four categories of function along this sensorimotor continuum--tactile sensing, active haptic sensing, prehension, and non-prehensile skilled movements--that they use as a framework for analyzing and synthesizing the results from a broad range of studies that have contributed to our understanding of how the normal human hand functions.

The book begins with a historical overview of research on the hand and a discussion of the hand's evolutionary development in terms of anatomical structure. The subsequent chapters review the research in each of the four categories along the continuum, covering topics such as the intensive spatial, temporal, and thermal sensitivity of the hand, the role of hand movements in recognizing common objects, the control of reaching and grasping movements, and the organization of keyboard skills. Jones and Lederman also examine how sensory and motor function develops in the hand from birth to old age, and how the nature of the end effector (e.g., a single finger or the whole hand) that is used to interact with the environment influences the types of information obtained and the tasks performed. The book closes with an assessment of how basic research on the hand has contributed to an array of more applied domains, including communication systems for the blind, haptic interfaces used in teleoperation and virtual-environment applications, tests used to assess hand impairments, and haptic exploration in art. Human Hand Function will be a valuable resource for student and professional researchers in neuroscience, cognitive psychology, engineering, human-technology interaction, and physiology.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"...a work of impressive scholarship that combines the breadth of coverage normally found only in edited collections, with the conceptual integration and uniformity of style that characterize the best single-authored works...Human Hand Function deserves to be read and reread by anyone with a serious interest in the hand's sensory and motor functions and the cognitive processes that control them."--Mark Hollins, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

"...a very well written and extensive compilation of a diverse literature on the hand as a perceptual organ."--Robert H. LaMotte, Yale University School of Medicine

"...a comprehensive, thorough, and cohesive work by two noted authorities on haptic perception and control...while the scope is broad, the coverage is at the same time deep. The citations, which I didn't try to count, must run to well over 1000 in number-themselves worth the price of admission."--Lawrence E. Marks, John B. Pierce Laboratory

"In Human Hand Function, Jones and Lederman have produced a work of impressive scholarship that combines the breadth of coverage normally found only in edited collections, with the conceptual integration and uniformity of style that characterize the best single-authored works. It is deeply informed and authoritative, yet clear and engaging, and does not require technical knowledge on the part of the reader. The organizational framework is logical and satisfying. Human Hand Function deserves to be read and reread by anyone with a serious interest in the hands sensory and motor functions and the cognitive processes that control them." --Mark Hollins, Professor of Psychology, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

"This is a very well written and extensive compilation of a diverse literature on the hand as a perceptual organ. It is not so much a critical evaluation or novel synthesis of scientific findings but rather a unique description, listing and bringing together of the literature--from tactile sensing and sensory neurophysiology to haptic processing, interfaces, and methods of evaluating hand function. In this regard it succeeds admirably and provides a valuable resource for both the novice and the specialist. Each will find a great deal that they will not have realized existed and gain insight into what remains to be discovered." --Robert H. LaMotte, Professor of Anesthesiology and Neurobiology, Yale University School of Medicine

"At last, a book devoted to the functions of that marvelous instrument of evolution, the human hand! Human Hand Function is a comprehensive, thorough, and cohesive work by two noted authorities on haptic perception and control. The authors consider the functions of the human hand broadly, from multiple perspectives, including tactile and haptic perception, sensory physiology, motor function, cognitive control, and robotics. And while the scope is broad, the coverage is at the same time deep. The citations, which I didnt try to count, must run to well over 1000 in number--themselves worth the price of admission. Novices and professionals alike will find much to learn here. No doubt my copy will quickly show the signs of wear from repeatedly consulting it." --Lawrence E. Marks, Director of the John B. Pierce Laboratory and Professor of Epidemiology and Psychology, Yale University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195173154
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 4/20/2006
  • Edition description: 1ST
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 10.10 (w) x 7.20 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Lynette Jones is a Principal Research Scientist in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Her research focuses on a number of areas related to human haptic perception and motor performance. Much of this work is conducted in the context of the design of haptic interfaces that human operators use to interact with computer-generated virtual environments or to control robotic devices. It entails basic research on the human proprioceptive and tactile sensory systems that examines how various feedback systems contribute to perception. Jones' applied research on haptic interfaces involves the development of wearable tactile displays that can be used as navigation aids.

Susan Lederman is Professor of Psychology, with cross-appointments in the Center for Neuroscience and the School of Computing at Queens University in Ontario, Canada. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and holds a Queens University Research Chair. Her research contributions span a wide range of topics pertaining to sensory, perceptual, cognitive, and sensory-guided motor processing. Her particular interests include tactile psychophysics, haptic and multisensory processing of objects, their properties and spatial locations, and in addition, the sensory-guided control of grasping and manipulation. Lederman has also applied the results of her scientific research to a variety of real-world problems, including the design of haptic and multisensory interfaces for virtual environments and teleoperation.

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Table of Contents

1 Historical overview and general introduction 3
2 Evolutionary development and anatomy of the hand 10
3 Neurophysiology of hand function 24
4 Tactile sensing 44
5 Active haptic sensing 75
6 Prehension 100
7 Non-prehensile skilled movements 116
8 End-effector constraints 131
9 Hand function across the lifespan 150
10 Applied aspects of hand function 179
11 Summary, conclusions, and future directions 204
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