2 Replies Latest reply on Mar 20, 2015 11:43 AM by ForumMigrationAdmin

    Wearables for the Blind

    ForumMigrationAdmin

      I have an idea that if a high definition 3D audio system was combined with a multiple camera input system and some powerful signal processing capability in a long battery life wearable then the phrase "blind as a bat" could become a method of enabling a blind person to see.  The camera inputs would be interpreted into sound objects in a 3D representation and "displayed" as 3D audio.  So a wall might sound like a geometric plane of white noise, and a curb might sound like a pulsing caution line, each getting louder and/or changing characteristic as you approach them.  Add the Internet Of Things and the system could guide the blind person through the streets of New Your City to any destination that they told the system that they wanted to visit.  Perhaps a variation of the system could use ultrasonic transponders to more literally mimic the bat's methodology of seeing through the use of sound echoes in a 3 dimensional environment.  In a motorcycle helmet, a variation of the system could give the rider "eyes in the back of their head" as well as instantly interpretable sound warnings of automobiles encroaching on their safety zone in traffic.  Internet connected music could be a nice background capability.  Another variation might be to replace the 3D audio with an undergarment that would "draw" the interpreted sight sound objects on a person's abdomen using touch/tickle transducers, so that the person touring New York City could be deaf as well as blind, communicating with the device through a Braille based I/O.

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      Service Bureau Manager, Schematic/Layout Design Review Services, Sales Marketing Group, Advanced Technical Sales, Tools aNd Technologies

        • 1. Re: Wearables for the Blind
          ForumMigrationAdmin

          interesting idea - although I wonder how much training it would require to "see" via your enhanced ears. Might be a good research project for a university. Certainly of high importance would be to make that system water proof - just imagine a blind person walking into a fast car or even a bicycle just because the detector has some latency ...

          • 2. Re: Wearables for the Blind
            ForumMigrationAdmin

            Good comment, it would definitely have to be ruggedized for all types of weather and fast.  It didn’t occur to me that it might also be useful underwater in a sonar type of variation, to enable a diver to “see” sharks coming from outside their field of vision.  Ideally, the system would be fast enough for a non-sighted person to catch a ball being thrown at them!

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            Service Bureau Manager, Schematic/Layout Design Review Services, Sales Marketing Group, Advanced Technical Sales, Tools aNd Technologies