tech

MIT finger device reads to the blind in real time

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By RODRIQUE NGOWI

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The road to hell is paved with good intentions. Do the blind really want an audio reader? Most non-blind or hearing impaired do not understand the culture that lies in these communities, and are treated with a parental nurturing philosophy that borders on being totally insensitive to the needs of these communities. Did any one of these Samaritans ever ask the blind if they even want this. As far as I know most blind would prefer to read from a brail book, their second choice is an audio reader. When it comes to brail it is hard to create a page with a large array of dimples that would allow the blind freedom of reading (books, newsprint and leaflets). The visual impaired have a greater tactual sensitivity than all sighted people could never have, not understanding this aspect of their lives means not understanding the community you are trying to aid . As far as computers is concerned, they have their own text to audio readers; which just needs to be switched on.

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I am hopeful. My brother was a childhood diabetic. That is another culture. Yet, he was healthy enough to love to learn, reading and writing. He also had a strange way of playing physical games for endless hours. Now he is all but blind, especially at night. If this is something that would let him read newspapers and the like, it is a miracle.

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