A group of engineering students at the University of Houston have created a device called MyVoice, a unique gadget that will enable better communication between the hearing-impaired and those without a hearing disability. MyVoice eliminates the need for a sign language interpreter because it is designed to translate sign language into sound communication (and vice versa).
Containing a built-in speaker, camera, monitor and microphone, MyVoice operates like a motion-sensing device -- for example, Microsoft's Kinect -- by sensing gestures and hand movements, and then translating them into a sound version. It can also translate sound and voice into sign language, displaying the symbols on its monitor for the user.
MyVoice just won first place at the American Society of Engineering Education Gulf Southwest Annual Conference, and the creators are now looking for funding to develop the gadget even further.
MyVoice Will Help the Hearing-Impaired Communicate
1. Sign Language Translation - The trend of creating new and innovative devices aimed at making sign language interpretation more accessible will allow more people with hearing impairments to communicate with others.
2. Gesture Recognition - The trend of using motion sensing technology to recognize and translate sign language can lead to the development of new opportunities in virtual reality, gaming, robotics and more.
3. Assistive Technologies - The trend of engineering solutions that enhance accessibility for people with disabilities is an area of disruptive innovation, creating opportunities in healthcare, communication devices, and wearable technology.
1. Technology - The technology industry can incorporate sign language translation technology into their products creating a more inclusive and accommodating digital space.
2. Healthcare - The healthcare industry can benefit from incorporating sign language translation into healthcare communication, bridging the gap for patients and healthcare providers with hearing impairments.
3. Education - The education industry can utilize sign language translation technologies in classrooms, improving access to education for students with hearing impairments.