Oscar Widegren is a young athlete who was the sole competitor in a trial called 'The Impossible Run.' Unlike an Iron Man race or an obstacle course, The Impossible Run was difficult not because of the aerobic or athletic intensity, but because of a trait specific to Oscar himself. Since the age of five, Oscar has been fully blind, and The Impossible Run was the first ever time that he ran on a track without any guidance from a physical person.
The run used technology developed by Lextar, a Swedish sound design company. To guide Oscar while he ran on the track, the company created speakers that shot linear sound waves along the lines of a track, creating invisible walls of sound that Oscar used as an aural touchpoint while he ran.
The Impossible Run Guided a Blind Racer Using Only Sound
1. Assistive Sound Technology - The development of speakers that shoot linear sound waves can be applied to assist individuals with visual impairments in various activities, such as running or navigating unfamiliar environments.
2. Unassisted Blind Sports - The success of the Impossible Run highlights the potential for unassisted blind races and other sports, creating new opportunities for blind athletes to compete independently.
3. Invisible Guiding Systems - The use of invisible walls of sound can be applied in various industries, such as navigation, architecture, and virtual reality, to provide guidance and enhance user experiences.
1. Assistive Technology - The development of assistive sound technology presents opportunities for companies in the assistive technology industry to create innovative solutions for individuals with visual impairments.
2. Sports and Athletics - The rise of unassisted blind sports opens up possibilities for sports equipment manufacturers, event organizers, and trainers to cater to the needs of blind athletes with unique training programs and specialized gear.
3. Audio Technology - The concept of using invisible guiding systems can be leveraged by audio technology companies to create new products and applications in areas such as navigation devices, sound installations, and immersive audio experiences.