The Digital Reading System is an incredible low-cost reading device, developed by researchers at Australia's Curtin University, that allows visually impaired people to 'read' documents. The device processes graphical information such as bills, PDFs, graphs and bank statements so visually impaired people can digest them.
The device uses pattern recognition and machine learning technology to separate content into blocks of text and pictures arranged in the correct reading order. These blocks are then identified as text, images, graphs or numbers and extracted. The information is then converted to audio format and can be translated into 120 different languages via a built-in speech engine.
The Digital Reading System is easily operable by people of all ages and abilities and is open source, allowing skilled coders to modify the software to suit different applications.