Smart Glasses for the Blind
OrCam smart glasses for the blind can help people regain their independence
“Two weekends ago I sat down and read the New York Times. I haven’t done that in maybe thirty years,” says Howard Turman, OrCam user, in this CNN Tech video. Turman, who is legally blind, started losing his vision when he was a child. The OrCam smart glasses for blind people do not fix his sight but they do “the next best thing.” The OrCam uses OCR technology to read text and relay the message to the user via a mini ear piece. Thanks to the device, Howard was able to enjoy the independence of reading the newspaper on his own. Amnon Shashua, co-founder of OrCam, explains that reading text, recognizing faces and products is just the beginning with the OrCam. “Where we want to get is complete visual understanding at the level of human perception such that if you are disoriented you can start to understand what is around you.” Since this video aired, there has been a lot of excitement and curiosity about the device. OrCam has received many requests from people all over the world wanting the device in their language. Currently, the device works in English, Hebrew, German, French, and Spanish. The OrCam team is working very hard to add more languages and there are plans for new additions in the near future. Since the first device, new features have been added as well such as the pause feature allowing users to pause the reading whenever they would like. Unlike other devices, the OrCam is portable and discreet. Its small compact size allows the user to feel like he does not stand out in the crowd. Turman says that the OrCam smart glasses for blind give him a sense of normalcy and he is very excited about them. “Picture a kid the first time he got his favorite toy, just the best thing that has happened to me in a long time” says Turman. OrCam’s goal is to make the device accessible to as many people as possible and help people who are visually impaired regain their independence.