Navigation Links
Device helps children with disabilities access tablets
Date:12/10/2012

Imagine not being able to touch a touch-screen device. Tablets and smartphoneswith all their educational, entertaining and social benefitswould be useless.

Researchers at Georgia Tech are trying to open the world of tablets to children whose limited mobility makes it difficult for them to perform the common pinch and swipe gestures required to control the devices.

Ayanna Howard, professor of electrical and computer engineering, and graduate student Hae Won Park have created Access4Kids, a wireless input device that uses a sensor system to translate physical movements into fine-motor gestures to control a tablet.

The device, coupled with supporting open-source apps and software developed at Georgia Tech, allows children with fine motor impairments to access off-the-shelf apps such as Facebook and YouTube, as well as custom-made apps for therapy and science education.

"Every child wants access to tablet technology. So to say, 'No you can't use it because you have a physical limitation' is totally unfair," Howard said. "We're giving them the ability to use what's in their mind so they have an outlet to impact the world."

The current prototype of the Access4Kids device includes three force-sensitive resistors that measure pressure and convert it into a signal that instructs the tablet. A child can wear the device around the forearm or place it on the arm of a wheelchair and hit the sensors or swipe across the sensors with his or her fist. The combination of sensor hits or swipes gets converted to different "touch-based" commands on the tablet.

Children with neurological disorders such as cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injury, spina bifida and muscular dystrophy typically suffer from fine motor impairments, which is the difficulty of controlling small coordinated movements of the hands, wrists and fingers. They tend to lack the ability to touch a specific small region with appropriate intensity and timing needed for press and swipe gestures.

The impact of Access4Kids could be significant. More than 200,000 children in the U.S. public school system have an orthopedic disability and have been excluded from tablet and touch screen devices. Current assistive technology, such as Augmentative and Alternative Communication devices, is available to those with motor impairments for traditional computer platforms but not tablets or smartphones.

"We can't keep it in the lab," Howard said. "It doesn't make sense for me to have one child, one at a time look at it and say 'Hey that's really cool' and not have it out there in the world. The real goal is to make it safe and efficient so someone can make it into a commercial product."

Howard is creating a second prototype that aims to be more flexible. It will include wireless sensors that can be placed anywhere a child is capable of hitting them, such as with a foot or the side of the head. User trials for the second prototype will begin soon. Howard says she hopes to have the device through clinical trials starting next year.

So far Access4Kids has received positive feedback from both typically developing children and children with disabilities, as well as caregivers. The device was also a finalist in a recent Intel-sponsored competition and was showcased to the British Consulate prior to the Paralympic games this summer, receiving good reviews.

The project was originally funded through the NSF-sponsored Broadening Participation in Computing Program and then through I-Corps, a National Science Foundation program that aims to translate scientific discoveries into useful products for society. Howard is working on a version of the device called TabAccess for adults with motor disabilities.

Access4Kids also received a seed grant from the Atlanta Pediatric Device Consortium, a partnership between Georgia Tech, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta and the Atlanta Clinical & Translational Science Institute that provides assistance with the commercialization of novel pediatric medial devices.


'/>"/>

Contact: Liz Klipp
klipp@gatech.edu
404-894-6016
Georgia Institute of Technology
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Nano-devices that cross blood-brain barrier open door to treatment of cerebral palsy
2. In Rat Study, Eye Device Shows Promise for Restoring Sight
3. Biochip-based device for cell analysis
4. New device warns workers of high levels of airborne metals in minutes rather than weeks
5. Device implanted in brain has therapeutic potential for Huntingtons disease
6. US Drug Watchdog Now Offers To Help All Recipients Of A DePuy Pinnacle Or Recalled DePuy ASR Hip Implant Get To The Best Attorneys Regardless If Their Device Has Failed
7. Oakworks Medical, a Division of Oakworks Inc., Oakworks.com, Manufacturer of Medical Tables and Positioning Devices Announces ISO 13485 Certification
8. Device is effective in managing incontinence after surgery
9. Adena Delivers Instant Health Information to Mobile Devices
10. The US Drug Watchdog Now Urges Plaintiffs Law Firms Worldwide To Contact Them About A Possible International Effort To Help Victims Of Defective Drugs Or Medical Devices
11. Popularity Causing Several Week Lag In Delivery Of 'Plug In' Device To Start Saving On Electricity Between 8% and 20%
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Device helps children with disabilities access tablets
(Date:2/13/2016)... ... ... in Sun City is the place to be on March 3rd to learn about the ... be hosting this educational seminar from 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Exciting advancements will be ... In addition, prizes will be given away and light refreshments will be served. , ...
(Date:2/13/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... February 13, 2016 , ... The producers ... impact of American businesses. , The increasingly modern world of instantaneous consumption proves ... on non-renewable energy sources such as oil and coal, which pollutes our air, water, ...
(Date:2/13/2016)... ... February 13, 2016 , ... ... Data Management Solution Providers list for its expertise in eClinical Solutions. DDi has ... to serve the technology needs of global clients. DDi provides smarter technology for ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... FL (PRWEB) , ... February 12, 2016 , ... ... non-profit organization devoted exclusively to funding innovative lymphoma research and serving the lymphoma ... – hosted over 250 members of South Florida’s philanthropic community at its 10th ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... February 12, 2016 , ... Coco Libre, ... participation in Red Carpet Events LA GRAMMY’s Style Lounge Event. Coco Libre will offer ... to stay hydrated before the big event. The invitation-only gifting suite, held this year ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/12/2016)... , Kalifornien, 12. Februar 2016  Sequent Medical, ... Aufnahme von Patienten für eine Studie zur Sicherheit ... („WEB") speziell für die Behandlung von rupturierten intrakraniellen ... MD, Leiter der Neuroradiologie an der Universitätsklinik Bicètre ... Hauptprüfarzt der CLARYS-Studie hat den ersten Patienten aufgenommen. ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... SAN DIEGO and SEOUL, ... -- Silicon Biosys­tems Menarini and Macrogen, Inc. today ... clinical assays and innovative procedures for precision medicine ... to combine Silicon Biosystems, DEPArray™ digital-sorting technology with ... development of tests certified under the Clinical Laboratory ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... 12 februari 2016 AAIPharma Services ... leverancier van productie en ontwikkeling op maat ... vandaag een uitbreiding aan van steriele vul- ... in Charleston, SC . ... meerdere recente investeringen. http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20150806/256637LOGO ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: