An attachment for spectacles aims to improve situational awareness for deaf and hard-of-hearing people.
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A winner of the James Dyson Award, the Peri spectacles attachment lights up to alert deaf and hearing-impaired people to noises outside their immediate field of vision. Inspired by Google Glass and the Head-Up Display in first person shooter games, the Peri uses readily available materials, including LED lights and 3D printable parts, to keep development and production costs much lower than traditional hearing aid devices.
Currently in the prototype stage, the team behind the design is working with researchers at the Singapore University of Technology and Design to continue enhancement of the idea. Goals for the final product include allowing for customizable positioning of the attachment on a wearer’s glasses; making the add-on as inconspicuous as possible; improving the wearable’s ability to recognize a broad range of sounds; and providing the entire design, including models and instructions, as an open source resource.
Inclusivity is an important area of development for smart cities worldwide, and industries ranging from symphony orchestras to personal device manufacturers are getting involved. Recent innovations include a smart shirt, which translates music into vibrations to help those with hearing impairments experience concerts, and a tablet for blind users that turns graphics into tactile content. How can smart homes connect similar innovations to help support more people in independent living?