Kinect to help the blind 'see' in augmented reality

Mar 18, 2011 by Katie Gatto weblog
Kinect to help the blind 'see' in augmented reality

(PhysOrg.com) -- It seems like there are no shortage of uses for the Kinect system. The device, which was initially created by Microsoft as an add-on to its popular Xbox 360 video game console, to allow users to ditch the controller, has been getting around. Now, it has been integrated into a system designed to help the blind.

The system in question, which was designed by graduate students at the Universität Konstanz in Germany, has been dubbed the NAVI, or Navigational Aids for the Visually Impaired.

NAVI works something like this. The infrared camera from a Kinect system is mounted to a helmet that can be worn by a bilnd person. The visual data from that camera is turned into a set of audio instructions that are then transmitted to the wearer via a wireless headset. The system also features a standard camera added as well, allowing for a kind of three-camera stereoscopic vision. Certain items, such as door, will trigger events, such as a countdown, to prevent users from walking into the aforementioned door, in a kind of .

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.

The goal is to be able to give a blind person warnings about potential obstructions and directions to navigate in set spaces, at a longer distance than the current systems in place. Though this reporter for one, thinks that a will be much more of a supplement to seeing eye dogs than a replacement for them.

The system is also paired with a vibro-tactile arduino system in the belt, that will most likely act as a warning system, should an obstacle come perilously close to the user. No plans for commercial release of the system have been mentioned at this time.

Explore further: For Google's self-driving cars, learning to deal with the bizarre is essential

More information: hci.uni-konstanz.de/blog/2011/03/15/navi/?lang=en

Related Stories

Microsoft to release a free SDK for Kinect this spring

Feb 22, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- Kinect, Microsoft's attempt to bring motion controls to the Xbox 360 video game console, is soon to have a non-commercial SDK released for it that will hopefully allow third-party developers ...

Consumer Reports: Kinect not 'racist'

Nov 05, 2010

(AP) -- Looking to debunk a report that Microsoft's new motion-sensing video game controller might be racist, Consumer Reports says it found no evidence that Kinect has problems recognizing users with darker skin.

Microsoft sells one million Kinects in 10 days

Nov 16, 2010

Microsoft said it sold one million Kinect motion-sensing controllers for the Xbox 360 videogame console in 10 days and is on pace to sell five million by the end of the year.

Recommended for you

Audi to develop Tesla Model S all-electric rival

1 minute ago

The Tesla Model S has a rival. Audi is to develop all-electric family car. This is to be a family car that will offer an all-electric range of 280 miles (450 kilometers), according to Auto Express, which ...

A green data center with an autonomous power supply

5 hours ago

A new data center in the United States is generating electricity for its servers entirely from renewable sources, converting biogas from a sewage treatment plant into electricity and water. Siemens implemented ...

After a data breach, it's consumers left holding the bag

6 hours ago

Shoppers have launched into the holiday buying season and retailers are looking forward to year-end sales that make up almost 20% of their annual receipts. But as you check out at a store or click "purchase" on your online shopping cart ...

Can we create an energy efficient Internet?

6 hours ago

With the number of Internet connected devices rapidly increasing, researchers from Melbourne are starting a new research program to reduce energy consumption of such devices.

Brain inspired data engineering

7 hours ago

What if next-generation ICT systems could be based on the brain's structure and its cognitive and adaptive processes? A groundbreaking paradigm of brain-inspired intelligent ICT architectures is being born.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.