EyeRing: Finger-Worn Assistant for Visually Impaired
EyeRing is a helpful assistant for those visually impaired, which can be easily attached on the index finger and used to take pictures, record videos, measure distance to the nearest objects and recognize items, all with the push of a button. Designed by MIT for those who truly need it, the visually impaired persons, this gadget can also be used to help children learn how to read or to discreetly capture documents in real-life situations.
All of these tricks are performed using a standard Bluetooth connection and by pairing the gadget with a smartphone to ensure the information recorded is transmitted accordingly or, using a pair of headsets to enjoy live feedback from the EyeRing assistant.
EyeRing – What it can be used for?
Without a shade of doubt, MIT’s Media Lab built EyeRing for the visually impaired people, that needed more than a stick to guide their way through life. For this category of people, EyeRing was demonstrated to measure the distance through various objects and to help the user identify a path through unknown places. Of course, it cannot replace the white stick on a busy street but it can be wonderfully used in closed quarters, like a shop or coffee house. Here’s what else it can do:
- Currency mode: by triggering the device to switch on this mode, it will help the user to identify the amount of money presented to the camera. All it needs to be done is to point the camera towards a bill, and EyeRing will identify its value, as well as its currency.
- Color mode: this mode is useful when shopping, enabling the device to identify the color of every item presented to the camera.
- Tag mode: although I don’t actually have the means to explain how this works, tagging seems to work just as a regular in-shop scanner, which identifies the price of an object instantly.
- Translations: young students can directly use EyeRing to translate words on a page by facing the camera on the desired section and waiting for a response from the paired device. As far as we know, EyeRing will not handle the translation mechanism, just the identifying part.
- Capturing: those in need for something fast to picture documents or record videos of interesting situations can now do so by using this one-eyed assistant and without needing any DSLR camera.
At the moment, EyeRing is unfinished and quite buggy but once the project will reach its final stages of development, this concept should really catch life and find a place amongst those who need its help.