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Author Topic: Devices To Help the Impaired Lead Normal Lives  (Read 186 times)

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AGelbert

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Devices To Help the Impaired Lead Normal Lives
« on: February 23, 2015, 07:54:58 pm »
Putting SUNU to the test

Agelbert NOTE:
This would be useful to a sighted person moving in total darkness too!  ;D



Rob, a Perkins student, uses the navigational wristband SUNU to locate doorways during a testing session for the device (Graphic at link).

December 30, 2014

By Alix Hackett

No one likes waiting in line at the bank, least of all Perkins teacher Kate Katulak. Because she is visually impaired, Katulak sometimes has trouble keeping tabs on the person in front of her, which can lead to some awkward moments.

“With a guide dog you have to constantly ask people, ‘Excuse me, are you moving up?’” she explained. “And if I say ‘forward’ to my dog she’s going to lead me right around people… so I cut a lot of lines.”

Enter SUNU (formerly known as Ustraap), a wristband that uses an ultrasonic sensor to detect obstacles and vibrate as they come closer. Someone wearing SUNU while waiting in line can feel the vibrations lessening as the person in front of them advances, prompting them to move forward themselves.

Katulak was able to try the product for herself during a recent two-day testing session run by SUNU and Perkins Products to gather feedback on the wristband, which is still in the prototype phase. Perkins Products staff formed a makeshift line, and Katulak practiced moving forward an appropriate distance behind them. On the first try, she was able to mirror the movement of the person in front of her.

“The band pulsated, and the pulsation kept getting lighter and lighter so I moved toward you,” she said. “That’s pretty cool.”

SUNU touts itself primarily as a navigational device, designed to help people who are blind avoid low-hanging tree branches or find doorways in a room. But during testing, SUNU’s chief strategy officer Fernando Albertorio was interested in hearing what other uses people came up with after wearing the wristband for the first time.

“To be honest with you, this is a use we hadn’t even thought of,” he said, referring to standing in line. “These two days are really about learning as much as we can in order to make improvements to the product and inform our launch and how we market it.”

SUNU and Perkins have been working together ever since SUNU (then known as Ustraap) won the Perkins Technology Sidecar Prize as part of MassChallenge, a Boston-based competition for entrepreneurs. Once a prototype of the band was developed, Albertorio tapped Perkins Products Director Joe Martini to recruit testers for the device who might use it in different ways.

“It hadn’t been tested with people who use guide dogs, individuals with low vision, or people who are deafblind,” said Martini.

During testing, each user donned a SUNU band and practiced using the vibration feedback to gauge distances, avoid obstacles and locate doorways. In one exercise, Albertorio held a plastic tree branch out at eye level, and asked testers to stop before walking into it. Perkins Products technology specialist Joann Becker, who uses a cane to navigate, said walking into stray branches is one of her biggest pet peeves. During the test, she strode quickly toward the branch, but stopped just inches away from it.

“Wow,” she said. “I could feel that it was there all of a sudden. I knew if I kept going, I would hit it.”

Perkins trainer Milissa Garside, another tester, wasn’t as worried about hitting things at eye level. “I’m short, so I don’t run into a lot of that,” she said, but like most people who tried SUNU, she had ideas for other uses.

“I would love to use this to locate a (traffic) light pole when I want to press the ‘walk’ button,” she said. “This would be so helpful, you have no idea.”

http://www.perkins.org/st.../putting-sunu-to-the-test



Video by the Corporation making this great device at link. 
They have tiny accessory transponders that can be attached to keys or other small objects so visually impaired people can find tagged misplaced objects quickly.  

http://sunu.io/
Leges         Sine    Moribus     Vanae   
Faith,
if it has not works, is dead, being alone.

AGelbert

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Re: Devices To Help the Impaired Lead Normal Lives
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2015, 06:36:39 pm »

Thanks to new bionic eyes, watch a man see his wife for the first time in 10 years
   

by
Jen Hayden
 
Allen Zderad sees his wife for the first time in more than a decade.
Researchers at the Mayo Clinic have take a few huge leaps forward in using "bionic eyes," known as the "Second Sight" system, to restore sight for the blind. Last week, Allen Zderad became the 15th person in the U.S. to test the technology:

It’s a medical story, a science and technology advancement and a romance wrapped into one moment: when a man who is blind sees his wife again for the first time in a decade.

Allen Zderad began to have serious vision problems about 20 years ago due to retinitis pigmentosa, a degenerative eye disease affecting the retina.

There is no effective treatment or cure. It ended his professional career and after a decade he was effectively blind, unable to see anything other than very bright light. He adjusted, even continuing woodworking by developing his sense of touch and spatial relationships. But he was unable to see his family, including ten grandchildren or his wife, Carmen.

Watch as doctors turn on the device, allowing Allen to see his wife and children for the first time

https://www.youtube.com/w...p;feature=player_embedded

"It's crude, but it's significant. It works," he rejoiced, through tears.
 .........
"I have a lot of fun with my grandkids and family. I think it would be good to recognize when they come in the room, and observe their growing and things like that. My grandkids in Oregon love playing hide and seek – they don't have to hide anywhere except for a corner of a room," Zderad laughed again.

Retinitis pigmentosa is inherited and Zderad's 13-year-old grandson has already been diagnosed with the eye disease. This incredible technology is giving new hope to the entire Zderad family.

http://www.dailykos.com/s...he-first-time-in-10-years
Leges         Sine    Moribus     Vanae   
Faith,
if it has not works, is dead, being alone.

AGelbert

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Re: Devices To Help the Impaired Lead Normal Lives
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2015, 06:30:15 pm »

EnChroma Cx Glasses for Colorblindness Now Available (VIDEO)   

by Editors  on Dec 11, 2014

 Just the other day we reported on new technology that corrects TV signals for colorblind people, and now we learn of new glasses that can make the entire world seem more colorful and vivid. The EnChroma Cx glasses from EnChroma, a Berkeley, California company, effectively provide high color contrast, producing an image in which the primary colors of red, blue, and green “pop” and are perceived correctly by the wearer.
 
The technology within the polycarbonate lenses is called Digital Color Boost because it has a very precise filtering of the color spectrum, allowing three ranges of wavelengths of light to come through while preventing much of the others from reaching the eyes. This is done using about 100 layers of a dielectric material, each only a few nanometers thick, that selectively screen light as it’s coming through.

The EnChroma Cx glasses are now available in styles or children and adults, including sport models that will help colorblind athletes at the very least to distinguish between different team jerseys. Moreover, they can be produced to prescription specs if colorblindness is not the only eye condition that these glasses may help with.

https://www.youtube.com/w...p;feature=player_embedded
   

http://www.medgadget.com/...-now-available-video.html


Leges         Sine    Moribus     Vanae   
Faith,
if it has not works, is dead, being alone.

 

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