Technology

Proximity Hat for Blind

Blind Hat instead of guide dog. Visually impaired can refer in the future in the hat room. The institution of the so-called ProximityHat comes close to a wall or an object, he senses this on the head. The smaller the distance, the stronger is exerted pressure. Read details here.

Hats off to the idea that lies behind the invention: the development of a technique that looks for the user and makes him feel seen. An additional sense impression comes into play. Why so complicated? Because it has been shown that the communication of sound signals, which favors, for example, developed by Microsoft, converts the GPS signals into sounds, sometimes irritated.

Proximity Hat for Blind
The ProximityHat warns of collisions on the sense of touch. The principle and the technology have been tested successfully. Photo: KIT

Stimuli through pressure take – this new approach the diploma architect Florian Braun chose for his undergraduate work in computer science at the Institute for pervasive computing systems at the Karlsruhe Institute of technology (KIT). “The development ProximityHat expands the sensations, you can not only see a room this or hear how it sounds in it, but also feel him”, says Matthias Berning.

Proximity Hat for Blind
Can the carrier detect its surroundings: the ProximityHat, called also “Approach Hat”.
Photo: KIT

Hat features Ultrasonic sensors and pusher

What’s in it in the Proximity Hat the KIT “Approach Hat”. The intelligent distance meter consists of Ultrasonic sensors that measure the environment in real time. Extendable, wrapped with elastic plastic stamps convey the institution due to weaker or stronger pressure on the head information about how close walls, passageways or objects are. Batteries supply power the sensor and pressure system.

Until there to buy the hat, it will take some time. Continue working on design and ease of use. Also, other target groups in the crosshairs are for future use of the device. So the system – could help built firefighters in helmets – to navigate in smoke-filled rooms. Or even screed stackers or technicians to facilitate such work backwards starting running it.

Simplified representation of the ProximityHat: the Ultrasonic sensors that measured are housed on the brim of the hat the space here. Photo: KIT
Proximity Hat for Blind