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Touch screen: For blinds

Finnish scientists have created a vibrating touch screen phone, for the visually challenged, that can simulate Braille characters. A Nokia 770 mobile Internet tablet was the main research tool used, and since it already has haptic feedback built in to the screen, it's relatively easy to develop and test the technique. Instead of recreating the 2 x 3 matrix of raised spots that represents a Braille character, the new system just vibrates the screen using the transducers. As a reading finger is touched to the screen, its position is logged relative to the conventional text character beneath: The Braille is then emulated as a Morse code-like chain of intense and weak vibrations of the screen. A strong one relates to a Braille dot, and a weak one represents a Braille space--it's incredibly simple.Volunteers involved in the research have been able to transition between conventional Braille and the new technique without too much difficulty, reading single characters in around 1.25 seconds.

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