University of Washington testing sign language video phones

Aug 20, 2010 By Brier Dudley

A new tool for communicating using American Sign Language over video phones is being field tested in the Seattle this summer by University of Washington researchers, who plan to expand the program this winter.

The "MobileASL" system compresses the video signal so it uses an estimated 10 times less bandwith than video chat programs like Apple's FaceTime.

By using less , the tool may be more accessible than services that require expensive plans and devices. It may also work in areas that don't have ultrafast mobile broadband service.

"We want to deliver affordable, reliable ASL on as many devices as possible. It's a question of equal access to mobile communication technology," said Eve Riskin, a professor of electrical engineering who led the project.

Riskin said it's the first study of how people in the U.S. use mobile video phones. A more extensive study will be done this winter.

MobileASL was developed by the UW's Summer Academy for Advancing Deaf and Hard of Hearing in Computing, a nine-week program for academically gifted deaf and hard-of-hearing students planning careers in computing, the school said in its release.

Explore further: BMW to reveal driverless innovations that allow for 360- degree collision avoidance and valet parking

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Researchers create cell phones for sign language

Dec 02, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- Cornell researchers and colleagues have created cell phones that allow deaf people to communicate in sign language, the same way hearing people use phones to talk.

Sign language cell phone service created

Mar 06, 2007

The world's first sign language dictionary available from a mobile phone has been launched by the University of Bristol's Centre for Deaf Studies.

With FaceTime, Apple has chance to dominate video calls

Jun 10, 2010

After decades of false starts, will Apple be able to bring video chat to the masses? While the technology, which would allows people to see those they're talking to, has long been in place, and video conferencing ...

Recommended for you

Cheaper, more powerful VR system for engineers

Dec 17, 2014

It's like a scene from a gamer's wildest dreams: 12 high-definition, 55-inch 3D televisions all connected to a computer capable of supporting high-end, graphics-intensive gaming.

Nokia HERE prepares maps for autonomous cars

Dec 17, 2014

Autonomous cars will need a new kind of map, a crucial element that until now has been given a back seat to the more popularly discussed issues of sensors and legal questions. Senior Writer Greg Miller in ...

Dutch launch 'intelligent bicycle' that warns of danger

Dec 15, 2014

The Netherlands on Monday launched its first-ever "intelligent bicycle", fitted with an array of electronic devices to help bring down the high accident rate among elderly cyclists in the bicycle-mad country.

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.