People with different abilities have been given a hand by techies. Two weeks ago we featured an article where a tech company was able to make a wireless wheelchair that is able to communicate with the user. In addition to that, researchers reported that they have discovered a cure for blindness.
Hadeel Ayoub, a student from Goldsmiths, University of London has invented a smart glove which translates sign language into speech. Spoken language is not used by everybody since we have people who do not have the ability to speak and hear.
However, Ayoub has decided to solve the problem with a glove that converts gestures into understandable text on a display or audible dialogue. The wireless SignLanguageGlove is designed to make communication easier for those with impediments or disabilities, and has already gone through three prototype stages.
The SignLanguageGlove interpreted gestures made by the user into visual letters on a screen and comprised of sensors, a microcontroller board and a four digit graphic numerical display. Cnet reports that, Five flex sensors were also installed on the glove to track five fingers. The second prototype was more efficient and used smaller software, while the newest third version incorporates a text-to-speech chip. The majority of the gloves’ equipment is sewn into the lining.
“I didn’t want all the wires to intimidate users, making them feel the glove will be complicated to use or really fragile,” Hadeel explained. “People tend to lean to the cautious side when approached with new high-tech products which contradicts the main purpose of this glove, which is to help make lives easier.”
The student is currently working on a smartphone application that will receive the glove’s output through Wi-Fi. He hopes toto eventually integrate a translation feature which will allow for real-time translation in multiple languages, a motion sensor for better mapping and a small glove which would be suitable for children.
In future, the student will make a Glove hardware version that will have the ability to send texts and emails based on the glove’s interpretation of gestures.
“I had one mission when I started this project and it was to facilitate communication between all kinds of disabilities, eliminating barriers between people who have a visual, hearing or speech impairment,” Hadeel said. “Once I’ve incorporated Wi-Fi and translation features into it the glove will be useful for all.”