This Slate Takes Advantage of 3D Printing to Show Maps and Images to Visually Impaired

One of the basic principles of the technology is that it has to provide a significant benefit to who uses it, whether it is an improvement in quality of life, or new tools that help with the daily work. Within the field of technological development for blind or weak-sighted people, has been to create devices that will help them to perceive objects and situations as if they were seeing, but through touch, here have emerged out of interesting initiatives as the tablet for the visually impaired, or by means of 3D printing to “see” pictures or artwork.

Within this field, it is as we now know a new development that gives blind people have access to maps, images, games, and even spreadsheets, this means a interactive whiteboard that takes advantage of 3D printing and voice commands, as if it were a touch screen.

Linespace: feeling and interacting

This slate dubbed Linespace has been developed by the Hasso Plattner Institute in Germany, its operation is based on a robotic head able to scroll through the entire surface thanks to a mechanical arm and engines, their work is draw lines of plastic to create images, whether for maps, structures or interior design programs.

The system is activated by means of a pedal and voice, where one of its most attractive is the possibility of point out something specific on the surface, to request more information. So far, this slate has applications for drawing maps, Excel, the game Minesweeper, one for interior design and Homefinder, allowing users to search apartments with city maps, approaches and details of each property mapping.

Linespace has started its first tests with good results, where his chances are running their incursion into several fields, but its creators believe education where you can take advantage of more. The next challenge is now create an affordable version, so that it is accessible to a large number of users, since the day of today, making this type of slate represents an expenditure of about 1,000 dollars, without counting their respective programming and applications.