THATS plus Smartphone or Tablet equals IMAGES for you!
We want you to learn by yourself faster, with the first free e-learning system based on embossed images with audio descriptions
How does THATS work?
THATS (Touch & Hear Assistive Teaching System) is an educational and entertainment solution for the blind and the visually impaired.
In the THATS digital library, you will find images with audio descriptions, on any topic and in any language, from textbooks to audio comics. The images can be downloaded and printed on embossed paper for finger tracking.
The THATS Companion app, which will soon be available for iOS and Android, describes these tactile images to you. The smartphone is suspended on a holder with its camera oriented below and the tactile image is positioned underneath. All you have to do is to indicate a certain area with your finger and so, an audio description is played.
The image is recognized by the app thanks to a unique QR code printed on it and the audio file is played depending on the position of the finger on the image.
Users such as teachers, parents or other authors will be able to create images and audio descriptions with the THATS online editor. The images will be assigned either to audio recordings or written descriptions (which can be listened with the help of native audio description apps). All the files are uploaded in the THATS digital library, available to any user.
THATS mobile app has 3 components:
The digital library, with images (with assigned audio description), ready for download and print in tactile format (swell touch paper or Samsung touchable ink)
Online editor, for creating personalized content: drawing images, recording audio, submitting written descriptions
Image recognition software, which identifies the position of the finger on the embossed paper and generates its assigned audio description
THATS offers you:
For the first time, you can study independently, without the assistance of another person and without Braille text. You can do this anywhere and anytime you want, just using your own smartphone and the embossed images from the database that you can print yourself at home or at school.
THATS offers materials on any topic and in any language, including vocational courses, which will help you find a job easier and so to improve your standard of living. A new study material means a new opportunity to easier integrate in the society.
You can access THATS from any smartphone or tablet, with iOS or Android. You can use the app for individual study or entertainment, at home or in public places. THATS can also help you with orientation by explaining embossed maps. In museums it will make you understand the exhibits in front of you by touching tactile copies of the original and getting a feed of live explanations while doing this.
You can download the app for free. The images with audio descriptions will be free to create in the online editor. Any user, from anywhere in the world, can contribute with an image ment to be printed in tactile format, with a written description, to be voiced by synthetic voices or a personalised audio recording, that describes the image you are exploring with your fingers. The materials in the digital library can be continuously improved, thanks to the online editor, which allows users to edit the files in the library.
Dan Patzelt, THATS founder, quote:
“A picture is worth 1000 words.
The representation of an image can be seen by a visually impaired person, also, if it’s on an embossed support and assigned to an audio description.
The present technology offers us the possibility to identify objects, but THATS does much more than that: it creates spatial images in the mind of a blind person.”
With THATS, we transform the smartphone in a personal assistant which explains tactile images.
No extra hardware, just free software
We are at 15% in the project: we already have the companion app’s prototype now.
Help us develop the whole THATS package and launch the apps sooner!
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