Haptics-e is dedicated to the development and expansion of the field of "haptics". For purposes of this journal, the field of haptics is broadly defined by the body of scientific knowledge, the set of techniques, and the application of results to the creation and enhancement of interactions and communications between humans and the external world. Such interactions and communications may be either direct or remote (via machines), and may operate on worlds that are either real or virtual. However, all forms of communication must employ mechanical signals that are available to sensory and motor neural units embedded in human skin, muscles, tendons and joints.
As part of its focus on haptics, the Journal will consider issues related to crossmodal and multimodal sensing and displaying, inasmuch as the haptic system is commonly used in conjunction with other senses. Crossmodal issues pertain to the translation of one form of sensory input or feedback into another. Multimodal issues pertain to the simultaneous use of haptics with one or more other sensory systems (e.g., visual, auditory, vestibular, taste, olfactory). In both cases, to be relevant for this Journal, the haptic system must be involved. Accordingly, the Journal will not address topics related to sensorimotor systems other than haptics, unless a strong case can be made for their relevance to the field of haptics.
The Journal is intended as a forum for encouraging the interplay between fundamental knowledge of biological touch systems and the development of systems that allow a human to control and communicate with external world(s). Areas of application therefore include, but are not limited to, the design of haptic interfaces for teleoperation and virtual environment systems, and for haptic interfaces that control other artefacts (e.g., vehicles, aids for the blind, musical instruments, surgical instruments, consumer products, etc.)
Principle 2: Scholarship
Haptics-e is a not-for-profit, high-quality, scholarly publication. All information published under its name will, to the best efforts of its Governing Board (GB) and Editorial Board (EB), be accepted after being submitted to a review process similar to the traditional, peer-reviewed practice of scientific publications. The goal of the Journal is to achieve the highest possible standards of originality, accuracy and relevance to the field of haptics.
Principle 3: Universal access and information technologies
Haptics-e is dedicated to universal access, and thus, will capitalize on electronic information technologies in all possible aspects of its operation. Thus, textual information, graphical information (static or dynamic), datasets, processing techniques embodied as computer code, as well as composite electronic documents may all be publishable in Haptics-e.
At the same time, the Journal recognizes that techological constraints will necessarily limit access by certain users or at certain times (e.g., due to network congestion). Therefore, for the forseeable future, the primary mode of communication in Haptics-e will include written English text and the language of mathematics with supporting graphics (henceforth, to be collectively referred to as "text"). Other modes such as videos, sound, and haptic simulations, will be included as supplemental enhancements to text. The Journal's intent is that the text must stand alone for evaluation and use without the supplemental enhancements. Haptics-e will maintain the text component of all current and formerly published papers in one or more up-to-date electronic formats. In selecting these formats, priority will be given to the formats that give access to the greatest number of potential interested readers. As a "worst-case scenario, printing and rescanning will be performed.
In the event that the GB determines that Haptics-e should cease publication of new material, the GB will endeavor to make sure that the existing papers are available for at least 5 years free-of-charge on-line, using up-to-date electronic distribution methods. After that time, a method of "passive" permanent archiving will be found, such as transfer to a permanent internet archive maintained by a stable institution, publication of a CD-ROM, or publication in the form of a bound paper book. As an ultimate back-up, the Journal will print a small number of copies of each paper (text portion) on high-quality paper, for storage by a small number of highly reliable research libraries throughout the world.
Haptics-e is enabled by the low-cost and wide availability of computing and communication resources. Haptics-e will be an all volunteer organization. If at some future time selected activities of the Journal are performed that require financial support from outside sources, that support shall be made by gifts, grants, or contracts to the home institutions of one or more of the members of the Editorial Board, Governing Board, or the Editor.
Circumstances not foreseen at this time may arise in which it is necessary to set up an explicit structure and procedures for handling money. This decision can only be made by a 2/3 majority vote of the Governing Board. After such a vote has been completed, the GB will amend these by-laws to create a Treasurer and a financial accountability structure for Journal.
The Editor serves as Chair of the Editorial Board, which is responsible for issues related to Journal submissions, reviewing, format details, length, and style of publication. The Editorial Board nominates its members, manages the Journal on a day-to-day basis, and is responsible for the final decision regarding approval/rejection of all manuscripts. Under the Editor's guidance, the EB ratifies the policies and procedures of the Journal, solicits Journal submissions, requests careful, high quality reviews, and creates and monitors task groups targeted at specific problems from any available experts or opportunities for the Journal.
Ratification of final policies developed by the task groups would be by either the Governing Board or the Editorial Board, as appropriate (see details of GB and EB responsibilities above).
Task force: Susan Lederman (Chair) Vincent Hayward Blake Hannaford Karon MacLean