Tactile Display System with the Input Stylus for Blind Users

Electronic Tactile Drawing System


* Abstract

Electronic Tactile Drawing System

People who are blind can make tactile drawings with raised line drawing kits. However, raised lines once drawn on the plastic paper of the kit are not erasable, whereas sighted persons can erase unwanted lines with an eraser. This problem of indelibility could be solved by using refreshable tactile displays. One technical challenge in using them is how to measure the location of the stylus point above the tactile display device. Our solution to this is connecting the drawing stylus and the display device with a two-axis arm that outputs angular positions. With this system setup, users can move the stylus above the tactile surface so as to freely draw and erase tactile drawings.

The main advantage of the system is that blind persons themselves can create graphics with tactile feedback. In combination with information communication technologies, blind users who are apart from each other can make conversation utilizing graphical information, which would make, for example, explanation of route maps more effective. For teachers, making and presenting tactile teaching materials would be much easier.

This work is in progress in collaboration with Dr. Makoto Kobayashi, Tsukuba University of Technology .

* Papers

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Last updated: August 13, 2007
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