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Vish
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Quote Vish Replybullet Topic: Projects to make life easier for blind persons
    Posted: 06-Sep-2009 at 11:39am
Hi all

Am interested in doing a project for blind persons which will help them in most of the day-to-day works.

Is any one interested to discuss more about such a projects?


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skb_mys
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Quote skb_mys Replybullet Posted: 16-Sep-2009 at 11:27am
hi.Am final year ec student. Even i had a plan to do such a project.I have a few ideas too. I would like to have some ideas from you too so that i can optimize my project..So whats your project...i am waiting for your reply..Smile
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morass
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Quote morass Replybullet Posted: 11-Nov-2009 at 1:27am
hey, i am also a final year student. I have in plan making a simillar project? could you send me some ideea?
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Quote Viji Replybullet Posted: 13-Feb-2010 at 7:25pm
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Quote Viji Replybullet Posted: 22-Feb-2010 at 12:18am
This sounded interesting....

An audiodisplay tool for visually impaired people: the sound screen system

The aim of this contribution is to present a flexible realtime system designed for vision rehabilitation using sensory substitution. In this version, the developed substitutive sensory system is restricted to graphical information. The system is based on some findings in psychoacoustics obtained from actual experiments. It is based on the auditive localization of virtual sound sources. This system consists of four loudspeakers located at the four comers of a square in the vertical plane in front of the listener. The basic idea is to construct an input-output mapping which converts graphical input information into localized sound source. The shapes of graphical forms are then converted into sounds produced by moving a virtual source. The displacement in azimuth and elevation on the plan defined by the four loudspeakers of this virtual sound source allows different shapes to be drawn. The temporal integration by the listener of successive positions occupied by this virtual sound source describes the global graphic object. The system has been successfully evaluated through experiments involving a small group of sighted and blind subjects

Source: IEEE
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Vish
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Quote Vish Replybullet Posted: 22-Feb-2010 at 12:31am
Hey guys, nice to c that so many r interested to help the needy....I was deeply impressed by this work of an Indian studying in US which gave me an insight to develop something for the blind....mine still in research mode.....

Talking Braille: A New Tool To Teach Blind Children - By Supriya Kumar

Learning Braille can be a formidable challenge in developing countries. Supriya Kumar profiles a new device that's addressing the task.

Imagine picking a hundred blind people at random from around the world. Chances are that 90 of them would come from developing countries. Of these 90, a large proportion would be living in poverty and only two would be literate.

At less than three per cent, the literacy rate among blind people in developing countries is extremely low, even in comparison with the low general literacy rate, which is 50 per cent in some countries. Often, parents do not see the value in educating their blind children. Even if they do, children may not receive appropriate attention in traditional schools. Very few teachers are trained to teach Braille, a written language for the blind, in which letters are represented by a group of raised dots that are felt with fingertips.

But reading and writing Braille is important: it is very difficult to learn mathematics orally, and Braille is important for the economic independence of the blind. So researchers in the United States have developed a Braille 'tutor', which tackles many of the issues faced by new Braille learners in the developing world.

The challenges of Braille

Braille is written using an array of different tools, depending on the available resources. In the developed world, Braille-writers use a six-key typewriter called a Brailler. At US$600 dollars, these fast and easy-to-use devices are too expensive for most in the developing world.

Children in developing countries use a slate and stylus - a writing utensil - to emboss Braille characters onto the back of thick paper. Embossing a mirror image from right to left on the back of the page ensures that what is written can be read from left to right when the page is right side up.

To be able to read and write Braille, children thus need to learn not just each letter in the Braille alphabet, but also its mirror image. Furthermore, feedback on whether they've written the characters correctly is delayed until the page is flipped over. The entire process presents a formidable challenge to young children learning to read and write.

Another challenge for learners arises from the fair amount of strength required to emboss dots onto thick paper using the stylus. "Weaker students and small children have problems learning braille," says Gubbi Muktha, managing trustee of Mathru School for the Blind in Yelahanka, near Bangalore, India.

"The Braille slate itself is heavy for the weaker and smaller children. Holding it is another big problem. In addition to this, holding a stylus and putting pressure through it to get the print of the dot is even more difficult."

The electronic solution

Nidhi Kalra, of TechBridgeWorld - a venture of the Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, United States - that aims to develop and implement technology to aid sustainable development around the world, decided to tackle some of these issues. She asked Tom Lauwers, a fellow student at the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, if he knew anyone who might be interested in building hardware that could be used with software she had written. Lauwers jumped at the opportunity and together they decided to produce a robust, low-cost, low-power, electronic Braille tutor. They wanted it to be something that could be used for a long time, whose parts were available locally and could be replaced using local manpower.

Their tutor - an electronic slate and stylus - uses affordable electronics to track contact between the slate and stylus, and text-to-speech software to provide immediate, audio feedback.

Kalra and Lauwers are developing the first generation tutor in close collaboration with the students and teachers at the Mathru School for the Blind in India. When Kalra took the Braille tutor to Mathru for field tests in the summer of 2006, the response she got was overwhelmingly positive.

Interactive learning

Mathru is a residential school with 45 blind students and eight teachers, six of whom are blind themselves. Kalra found that after six weeks of using the Braille tutor, students who previously made frequent mistakes started writing noticeably faster, with almost no mistakes. "Now the small children and weaker students of Mathru are happily learning Braille as it is easy and also fun learning," says Muktha.

Even students who were fluent in Braille enjoy using the tutor because of the audio feedback. Overall, Kalra found that students and teachers seemed to be writing much more.

Based on feedback from teachers and students at Mathru, Lauwers designed the tutor to feel like the slate the students are used to, by placing a cut-out of a normal plastic Braille slate over the top of two rows of Braille cells in the tutor. The stylus is also a normal Braille stylus, connected to the tutor by a wire. In addition to two rows of 16 cells each, the tutor also has four buttons that can be programmed so the students can interact with the tutor. For example, one button mutes the speaker so that advanced users can write without audio feedback; another button allows students to choose between writing right-to-left or left-to-right.

Each alphabet in English Braille is written as a set of six dots in a cell. The tutor feeds back on both the dot sequence and the letter that the sequence encodes, thereby reinforcing the sequence to the beginner. Further, the tutor provides this audio feedback as soon as the writer touches the stylus to the slate, removing the need for strength that would be required to emboss paper.

The software for the tutor uses a digitised version of a Mathru teacher's voice for audio feedback, as the children - especially the younger ones - had difficulty understanding the American accent normally used in text-to-speech software.

The tutor can be tailored to address the specific needs of the student based on their level of fluency in Braille. The tutor can be adjusted to read out the position of the dots in the cell, the letter and - for students well-versed with the alphabet - just the final word or sentence they have written.

The tutor has also been useful in diagnosing students' problems with Braille. Mangala, a student at Mathru, always completely embossed all six dots of a Braille cell before she started using the Tutor, suggesting that she didn't understand the concept of Braille. But the tutor showed she understood the concept; her mistake was that she wasn't moving from one cell to the next as she wrote the sequence of letters. So, for instance, she would emboss dots one and three of a cell for the letter 'k', and then, dots one, two, four and five of the same cell for the letter 'n'. Her teachers, who are also blind, realised that this was the case because the tutor would read aloud the letters she was embossing.

Work is underway to produce the next generation of the tutor, which could be tested later this year. Kalra found that students at Mathru were often scared of touching the original stylus because of the wire that connects it to the tutor, so in the new version of the tutor, the stylus interacts with the slate wirelessly.

Shivayogi Hiremath, an engineer who has undertaken a pilot project to produce six tutors locally in Bangalore, says that mass production in India will require some adjustments to the electronics design so that locally-available materials can be used.

"All details of hardware and software design will be made open-source. It should, therefore, be fairly easy to adjust the design if need be, in order to produce the tutor in large numbers," says Lauwers. Hiremath and Anil Biradar, an IBM (International Business Machines Cooperation) employee in India, helped to get a US$1000 donation from IBM for the Mathru School, so they can continue to explore local production of the tutor.

For now, the Mathru School has three tutors, and is expecting to have some more available soon, thanks to the grant from IBM. Mathru also plans to introduce and encourage use of the tutor among potential users outside the school, once there are enough tutors available.

All too often, technology used in developing countries is not designed with the explicit needs of local people in mind. But the Braille tutor appears to be a case of technology from the 'bottom up'. The need for the Braille tutor existed, and Kalra and Lauwers are successfully providing the technology to address that need.

Supriya Kumar is a biologist and a freelance writer from Bombay, India, currently working towards a degree in public health at the University of Pittsburgh in the United States.

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Quote ProjectGuidance Replybullet Posted: 22-Feb-2010 at 12:39am
An very useful product for vision-impaired readers by Kindle

Blind and Vision-Impaired Readers to Benefit from New Kindle Features in 2010

SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Kindle, the #1 bestselling product across all of Amazon, has enabled many vision-impaired readers to enjoy books more easily than before, and has also helped dyslexic readers and those with learning disabilities improve their reading skills. Vision impaired customers benefit from Kindle’s ability to change the font size – easily making any book a large print edition. Dyslexic readers benefit from being able to listen with Kindle's text-to-speech technology while simultaneously reading along with the synchronized text. Today, Amazon announced that it is working on a new set of features that will make Kindle even better for these readers as well as a meaningful breakthrough device for the blind.

“Kindle is for anyone who loves to read—in fact, we’ve heard from thousands of vision-impaired customers and customers with learning disabilities over the past two years who have been helped tremendously by Kindle,” said Ian Freed, Vice President, Amazon Kindle. “With some key modifications, we believe Kindle can be a breakthrough device for the blind, and the team is excited about making these enhancements.”

Here's Amazon describes the new features:

To make Kindle more useful for the blind, the Kindle team is currently working on an audible menuing system so blind and vision-impaired readers can easily navigate to books unassisted, in addition to listening to books as they can already do today with Read To Me. In addition, a new super size font will be added to Kindle, increasing the number of font sizes from six to seven. This seventh font size will be twice the height and width of the current largest font. These new features are scheduled for release by the summer of 2010.
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Quote Karthik Replybullet Posted: 22-Feb-2010 at 12:45am
Why not try an idea of implementing talking signals in main areas as these people have done in US...

Talking Signs Remote Infrared Audible Signage
for
Transit Stations, Surface Transit, Intersections and ATMs


The most common signage for people who are blind is restricted to tactile displays. This requires persons to be at the location of the signs before they can identify the information it bears. Using such signage as an aid in locating and traveling to a telephone booth, bus stop, elevator, public electronic terminal, building entrance or exit, leads to the paradoxical effect of having to already be there before one knows where it is. in addition to the problem of locating specific travel goals, very often blind travelers are unaware of the many amenities that sighted travelers encounter in a purely serendipitous fashion.

Remote Infrared Signage is particularly appropriate for open spaces where tactile signs are inappropriate; they label the environment for distant viewing. Remote infrared signs allow people to directly know not only what choices are available to them, but where in the environment these options are. Just as sighted persons visually scan the environment to acquire both label and direction information, remote infrared signs directly orient the person to the labeled goal and constantly update the person as to his progress to that goal. That is, unlike Braille, raised letters, or voice signs which passively label some location or give mobility instructions to some goal, remote infrared signage provides a repeating, directionally selective voice message which originates at the sign and is transmitted to a hand-held receiver. The direction selectivity is acharacteristic of the infrared message beam and ensures that persons using the device gets constant feedback about their relative location to the goal as they move towards it.

More on http://www.talkingsigns.com/signage.shtml

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Quote ProjectGuidance Replybullet Posted: 22-Feb-2010 at 1:12am
Hi All,

Here is a project for visually impaired/blind people that helps them to access the internet.

You can visit Developing Multi-modal Interfaces for Visually Impaired People to Access the Internet to download the project.

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Quote Prabha Replybullet Posted: 25-Feb-2010 at 2:50am
Hi all......there is one more fantastic project on Audio guidance for supporting blind people in buildings...the download has a circuit tooooooo

Audio Guidance System for the Blind with Circuit Diagram
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taru
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Quote taru Replybullet Posted: 15-Mar-2010 at 11:52pm
hello ...
i am interested in making a project that would help the blind people.
Its great to c such great ideas about the topic !
but can anyone suggest me something which would relate it to mechanical engg....???
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Quote Krishna_Sridhar Replybullet Posted: 07-Apr-2010 at 1:04pm
gud thought taru...even my mechanical frnds had an idea of it....
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Quote sameeksha Replybullet Posted: 14-Apr-2010 at 9:36pm
hiii m very much excited to be a part of this project. could you please send me the details, circuit diagram and necesarry requisites.
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Quote sameeksha Replybullet Posted: 14-Apr-2010 at 9:44pm
hiii it's a very good project and interesting too. please send me the circuit diagram and necessary details.
thank you. [:)]
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Quote sindhuja1203 Replybullet Posted: 08-Jun-2010 at 9:21pm
hi iam interested in doing this project which is really helpful for blind people ........but i need some guidance about project..........this is my first project........
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Quote Shefali Replybullet Posted: 13-Aug-2010 at 11:13pm
i need sm dis type of intrstin projct hav u made it
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