Assisted reading through electronics is a difficult problem to solve, but the FingerReader tackles the task quite well.
Printed text can be a curse to some people. Vision problems, dyslexia, and cognitive deficiencies may put up a barrier that's difficult to breach. This project out of the MIT Media Lab aims to use wearables to overcome reading problems.
The FingerReader is a ring that can scan printed text and read it out loud. If you can trace your finger along a sentence, the FingerReader will do the rest. It also has haptic feedback built in. It will vibrate to let you know you've reached the end of a line, when you're at the beginning of the next line, and if your finger is drifting off track.
The idea is sound and seems like it would help many people, yet the video seems a little misleading. You'll notice a cable extending from the ring when the video shows the FingerReader being used. I suspect the cable is actually sending this visual data to a computer for the processing and speech synthesis. Though the project is still in a very early prototype stage, it's not a stretch to think that the MIT Media Lab could bundle all the components into a package that small if it had the time and funds.
— Caleb Kraft, Chief Community Editor, EE Times
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