Voice Operated Guidance Systems for Vision Impaired People: Investigating a User-Centered Open Source Model

Advanced Institute of Convergence IT
Publication Type:
Journal Article
International Journal of Digital Content Technology and its Applications, 2009, 3 (4), pp. 60 - 68
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People who have impaired vision regularly use white canes and/or guide dogs to assist in obstacle avoidance. Several electronic devices are currently available for providing guidance to a remote location, but these tend to be expensive, or make use of a Braille interface. This project investigated the suitability of a user centered client server approach for the development of a talking GPS system intended to fill a niche for outdoor wayfinding. The work resulted in a working prototype proof-of-concept system that uses a speech-recognition speech-synthesis interface. The prototype solution includes a custom web application which accesses the Google maps API. The system is intended to be scalable and extensible with additional features such as sensors for obstacle avoidance and access to web-based information such as weather, train or bus timetable information. The client server approach was found to be suitable for the development of this type of application.
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