As a blind person, I tend to associate with a fair few others in similar situations. Among them, one of the things that crops up every now and again is, “I’d get a braille display, if it would read more than one line of bloody text.”. Which is, rightfully, a valid criticism–I, personally, find it a hundred times faster/easier to just have the computer talk to me than to try and read, for example, some of the news articles I plan to link to on one of today’s braille displays. Fortunately, for folks who happen to be fans of using braille display technology, someone’s looking out for you.
Researchers from North Carolina State University now say they have devised a display that would allow visually challenged users to read a full page at a time — and at a much lower cost than existing displays.
“We have developed a low-cost, compact, full-page braille display that is fast and can be used in PDAs, cellphones and even GPS systems,” says Dr. Peichun Yang, one of the researchers working on the project, who is himself blind.
Braille display tech, meet the mainstream. Next stop, maybe? Quite possibly inside your cell phone. That is, if it ever gets beyond the experimental/theoretical stage. Either way, though, it’s this kinda stuff that keeps me interested in all things geeky. Hey, if you’re blind, this is geeky. Work with me here.