Development of a visual information to auditory information transformation system for ambulation assistance.

Technol Health Care 2019 ;27(S1):165-173

Jeyun Medical Inc., Hosan-dong, Daegu, Korea.

Background: Assistant equipment for the visually impaired has a white cane. If the information in the three-dimensional space is transmitted by sound, the blind can draw a three-dimensional space.

Objective: This study developed "Visual System," an ambulation aid/guide for the blind that transforms visual-spatial information into auditory information, and verified its utility. Unlike conventional systems, which are in essence simple collision-warning systems, Visual System helps the visually impaired to recreate their surroundings and to be cognizant of the location and proximity of obstacles.

Methods: Ten subjects with normal vision (mean age: 32.4 years; male-to-female ratio: 6 to 4) were selected for blind tests. The subjects were instructed to detect and avoid obstacles presented in various three-dimensional settings. Prior to the tests, experiments were conducted to determine the distance to each subject. Upon completion of Visual System-based detection training, obstacles were presented and tests conducted. For evaluation, the subjects' vertical position detection, horizontal position detection, distance detection, and overall performance success were each evaluated.

Results: The total performance scores ranged between 88 (lowest) and 100 (highest), with a mean score of 91.5.

Conclusions: The results indicate that Visual System as a product can assist the visually impaired in their daily functioning.

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Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.3233/THC-199016DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6598023PMC
January 2019

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