ESME Blind Solutions
Searching on how to help blind people with accessible technologies.
Problem 1: “solutions to sustain ourselves with food & energy”
Solution 1: create an app that classifies most of the restaurants in France in different categories (junk food, vegetarian, bio...) and tells you on a scale from 1 to 10, how healthy it is. The app will also give an average of the money you spend if you go and eat there. This will allow people to eat healthy without spending too much.
Solution 2: Pedometer watch, maybe heart rate monitor...
Problem 2: “ensure well-being, even in case of health issues”
Existing solution: blind people stick
Solution 1: blind people have issues with obstacles. To solve this, we had different ideas:
An overboard with a stearing wheel and a sensor that allows you to go around obstacles
A remote that detects movement thanks to an ultrasonic sensor. The closer to the object, the stronger the vibration is going to be. Our invention doesn’t have to be a remote, it could also be a glove or any type of clothing.
We decided on which category to work: ensure well being, even in case health issue. More precisely, we wanted to focus on problems regarding blind people.
To do so we wanted to improve and more importantly combine different inventions that already exist:
The first existing object, is a basic walking cane. This object presents many drawbacks; the first one being that to know if there is an obstacle , you have to hit it. Another problem is that a stick is very big and not practical. A last problem is that you don't have both of your hands free while you use a cane.
The second invention is an ultrasonic glove. This object is really useful but you always have to wear the glove, which can be uncomfortable.
The last invention is a remote that thanks to ultrasonic sensors can detect how far you are from an object and starts beeping. The closer you get to the object, highest the frequency is going to be. This is the item we want to work on.
Our goal is to work on the third invention but making it better by adding a "ways" for blind people. This will allow blind people to comunicate and to indicate every unforeseeable obstacle.
Today we are going to do our paper prototype and start the conception of our project. We will decide the design of the stick. We decided to impliment a Retractable Ballpoint Pen system, so that it will be easyer to adjust once in the streets. In the end, after further review, we realized that the mechanism takes allot of space and that it is better to do something less cumbersome, suc as a telescopic stick similar to selfie sticks.
We also did our purchase list:
Today we decided to improve our project. We thought that it would be better to add a Velcro “bracelet” that allows you to put the sensor anywhere on your body (wrist, head…). We also decided to put the vibrator separately, on a bracelet on your wrist so that it is easier to feel the vibration. We started The manual work as well; we soldered the small Arduino card with the pings. We then made our prototype on a big Arduino card and it works! The closer you get to the sensor, the highest the frequency of the vibration is going to be. We started to tape the arduino card to a stickto try it out but in the end we din't have time.
Today we built a first prototype of our project. We attached the arduino card (and the ultrasonic sensor) thanks to a piece of tape, to a piece of wood. We tried the invention being blindfolded and going around the CRI. We realised that the sensor doesn’t detect far enough and that it is to thin. That is why we wanted to put two sensors one next to the other; the problem is that the two sensors will “disturb” one the other.
After further review, we managed to modify the algorithm so that the sensor can detect 2 meters far. The problem now, is that if you aim at the floor, the machine will vibrate constantly, which means that you are not able to localize obstacles such as chairs or low objects.