RSI Utilities

The following page contains links to some of the free computer software utilities which are available and may be useful in your quest to avoid RSI.

If you know of any useful free software utilities that can be used to reduce exposure to RSI type injuries, please send a link and we can add it in.

Typing Replacement Software

dasher Name: Dasher
Developer: University of Cambridge
Description: Alternative to typing (Windows, Mac, Linux) Free
Developer says: “Dasher is an information-efficient text-entry interface, driven by natural continuous pointing gestures. Dasher is a competitive text-entry system wherever a full-size keyboard cannot be used – for example,

* when operating a computer one-handed, by joystick, touchscreen, trackball, or mouse;
* when operating a computer with zero hands (i.e., by head-mouse or by eyetracker);
* on a palmtop computer;
* on a wearable computer.

The eyetracking version of Dasher allows an experienced user to write text as fast as normal handwriting – 29 words per minute; using a mouse, experienced users can write at 39 words per minute.”

Alan’s Comments: “(Windows, Mac, Linux) Free, Utility that allows user to enter text without using a keyboard, and with minimal mouse movement too. Takes a bit of getting used to, but looks useful and innovative. I haven’t persevered with learning to use this tool. The eye tracking feature sounds interesting. You can try a Java version of Dasher in your browser to check it out.”

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RSI Break Timers Software

RSIbreak Name: RSI Break
Developer: RSI Break
Description: Break reminder, (Linux KDE) Free GPL
Developer says: “RSIBreak simply offers reminders to take a break now and then.”
Alan’s Comments: “Have not tried this software out, but log stats on breaks taken. Linux only based tool.”
workrave Name: Workrave
Developer: Workrave.org
Description: Break reminder, set daily limits, work pattern analysis, stretch tutor. (Windows, Linux) Free
Developer says: “Workrave is a program that assists in the recovery and prevention of Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI). The program frequently alerts you to take micro-pauses, rest breaks and restricts you to your daily limit.”
Alan’s Comments: “Break reminder with additional stats analysis and a stretch tutor, for free. Can’t be bad!”
soundbreak Name: SoundBreak
Developer: Leon Matthews
Description: Audible break reminder. No popups! (Windows) Free
Developer says: “Every 10 minutes (or whatever you set it to) the program will play a sound to remind you to have a stretch. I use a large archive of sound bites from movies and TV that I found on the web – the program picks one at random as the reminder each time to keep it interesting.

The important thing is that this is not intrusive, it does not slow me down, and it works. I resent those programs that measure how much you have moved your mouse, or used your keyboard. All that expends resources that my PC and I could better use elsewhere. SoundBreak just sleeps until it is needed.”

Alan’s Comments: “I havn’t tried this software out yet.”
breakreminder_sm Name: Break Reminder
Developer: Chequers Software
Description: Break reminder. (Windows) Free
Developer says: “A break reminder program to help prevent OOS/RSI and to assist in the healing process if these or similar conditions already exist.
Small program interface that discretely runs in the background monitoring your computer use, which uses timers (to your settings) that remind you to take a break.”
Alan’s Comments: “I havn’t tried this software out yet.”

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Mouse Click Software

Point-N-Click Name: Point-n-click
Developer: Polital
Description: Multi option customisable automatic mouse clicking tool. (Windows) Free,
Developer says: “Point-N-Click is a FREE stand-alone on-screen virtual mouse designed for anyone with a disability that makes it difficult or impossible to click a physical computer mouse. As long as they can move a mouse, trackball or other pointing device, they can send mouse clicks to virtually any Windows application or DOS application that can run within a window and even many that are full screen.”
Alan’s Comments: “The automatic mouse clicking software with the most customisable number of options out there.”
mousekateer Name: Mouseketeer
Developer: FXC
Description: Simple mouse clicking software (Windows) Free
Developer says: “Mouseketeer is a small, simple and reliable software application that enables the user to carry out clicking actions without the need for pressing the mouse buttons.

It will enable the following actions: If the pointer does not move, the clicking action will not occur. Clicking only happens after moving the pointer, thus preventing constant clicking when not required.

Every action is signified by a beep from the computer.

The Options button will allow the varying of the dwell time for the software.”

Alan’s Comments: “Simple looking motion based mouse clicking software I have not tried this program out.”
mouseless_sm Name: Mouseless Web Browsing
Developer: mouseless.de
Description: Mouseless web browsing for Firefox 3.x, comes as a Firefox extension. Adds numbers to hypertext links to allow fast keyboard based selections.
Developer says: “Mouseless Browsing (MLB) is a Firefox-Extension which enables you to browse the internet with the keyboard. The basic principle is to add small boxes with unique ids behind every link and/or form element. You just have to type in the id and press enter (there is also an automatice mode available) to trigger the corresponding action i.e. following a link, pressing a button or selecting a textfield.”
Alan’s Comments: “Mouse free Firefox web browsing. See video for demo. The software works well for completely mouseless web surfing. The plug-in places a unique number next to every clickable link on a page, giving you numerical access to each link. You use the CTRL key followed by the link number to open a link. Nice features, but messes up some formatting eg in WordPress editor etc.”

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Motion Counting Software

mousotron2 Name: Mousetron
Developer: Blacksun Software
Description: Mousetron counts your mouse clicks and mouse motion distance, useful for monitoring workload. (Windows) Free
Developer says: “Mousotron keeps track of how much you move or click your mouse.
Also the number of keystrokes is measured.

Mousotron is basically just fun, but it can also be a very handy tool in RSI prevention (Repetitive Strain Injury) or the rehabilitation of it.

You can also post your scores online automatically and compare with other users.”

Alan’s Comments: “The counting of distance and number of clicks may be useful to monitor your workload.”

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<table style=”width: 100%; clear: both;” border=”0″ cellspacing=”2″ cellpadding=”2″ align=”left”>
<tbody>
<tr class=”top”>
<td rowspan=”3″ valign=”top”><a href=”http://www.ergomatters.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/soundbreak.jpg”><img class=”alignleft size-full wp-image-657″ title=”soundbreak” src=”http://www.ergomatters.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/soundbreak.jpg” alt=”soundbreak” width=”150″ height=”105″ /></a></td>
<th width=”100″>Name:</th>
<th><a title=”SoundBreak” href=”http://www.lost.co.nz/software/soundbreak/index.html” target=”_blank”>SoundBreak
</a></th>
</tr>
<tr>
<td width=”100″><strong>Developer</strong>:</td>
<td><a title=”Leon Mathiews” href=”http://www.lost.co.nz/” target=”_blank”>Leon Matthews</a></td>
</tr>
<tr>
<td width=”100″><strong>Description:</strong></td>
<td>Audible break reminder. No popups! (Windows) Free</td>
</tr>
<tr>
<td><strong>Developer says:</strong></td>
<td colspan=”2″>”Every 10 minutes (or whatever you set it to) the program will play a sound to remind you to have a stretch. I use a large archive of sound bites from movies and TV that I found on the web – the program picks one at random as the reminder each time to keep it interesting.

The important thing is that this is not intrusive, it does not slow me down, and it works. I resent those programs that measure how much you have moved your mouse, or used your keyboard. All that expends resources that my PC and I could better use elsewhere. SoundBreak just sleeps until it is needed.”</td>
</tr>
<tr class=”bottom”>
<td><strong>Alan’s Comments:</strong></td>
<td colspan=”2″>”I havn’t tried this software out yet.”</td>
</tr>
</tbody></table>

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