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Wireless Eye

Because reading is fun
 
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This is probably a bit out of our current technological range, but it can't be that far out there. Insert a camera, battery, and some kind of wireless transmitter into a polymer "eye". The outward facing portion of the eye could also serve as a collection area for solar power (as powering the thing seems to be the biggest drawback I can think of...I'm sure you can think of more though ;p).

Now, anytime the blind person wants to know what he's looking at, you just transmit a signal to the eye to take a shot. The picture is routed into software capable of recognizing words, which is in turn routed to one of those portable braille machines with the movable pins.

This could allow a blind person to read books, or just get an idea of what kind of area of town he/she is in.

I'm sure they already have scanners that allow you to read a book, but I wanted something that could be implanted and left alone...plug and play if you will.

There's a very good chance we're not close enough with image recognition software, battery life, and efficient solar cells to make this work today, but it sure would be a great thing to have.

Arduen, Mar 29 2004

Mobile OCR for the blind http://www.seeingwithsound.com/ocr.htm
[jutta, Oct 04 2004]

sh505i http://www.nttdocom...roduct/mova/sh505i/
Hai, hai, wakarimasu. [jutta, Oct 04 2004]

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       OCR rocks, even for people who aren't blind - everybody has trouble remembering and copying things. Having a daily text stream of the words around me would be great.   

       <Insert obligatory reference to the SH505i cell phone with built-in OCR of up to 35 characters. (I don't know if it does Text-to-speech, and most of the material is in Japanese.)>
jutta, Mar 29 2004
  
      
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