added a research item
This paper documents the design, implementation and evaluation of the Unfolding Space Glove – an open source sensory substitution device. It transmits the relative position and distance of nearby objects as vibratory stimuli to the back of the hand and thus enables blind people to haptically explore the depth of their surrounding space, assisting with navigation tasks such as object recognition and wayfinding. The prototype requires no external hardware, is highly portable, operates in all lighting conditions, and provides continuous and immediate feedback – all while being visually unobtrusive. Both blind (n = 8) and blindfolded sighted participants (n = 6) completed structured training and obstacle courses with both the prototype and a white long cane to allow performance comparisons to be drawn between them. The subjects quickly learned how to use the glove and successfully completed all of the trials, though still being slower with it than with the cane. Qualitative interviews revealed a high level of usability and user experience. Overall, the results indicate the general processability of spatial information through sensory substitution using haptic, vibrotactile interfaces. Further research would be required to evaluate the prototype’s capabilities after extensive training and to derive a fully functional navigation aid from its features.
This is the theoretical part of my bachelor thesis. The paper is only available in German. In this paper – so called "proposal" – the phenomenon of Sensory Plasticity is researched as a basis to develop a Sensory Substitution device in the later published final thesis.
As this is my bachelor thesis the paper is only available in German - sorry for that. This project deals with the phenomenon of sensory substitution by which the function of one missing or faulty sensory modality is replaced (substituted) by stimulating another one. During the thesis a device has been developed, which aims to enable the blind to haptically experience the surroundings and spatial depth through vibration, so that they can detect obstacles and orient themselves within space in order to better cope with their daily activities. more information (German and English) on: https://unfoldingspace.jakobkilian.de