Eye of the Beholder: Phone-Based Text-Recognition for the Visually-Impaired

TitleEye of the Beholder: Phone-Based Text-Recognition for the Visually-Impaired
Publication TypeConference Papers
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsDumitras T, Lee M., Quinones P., Smailagic A., Siewiorek D, Narasimhan P.
Conference Name2006 10th IEEE International Symposium on Wearable Computers
Date Published2006///
KeywordsCAMERAS, data mining, handicapped aids, Hardware, Image quality, Internet, Land mobile radio cellular systems, Mobile computing, mobile handsets, mobile text-recognition system, Optical character recognition software, phone-based text-recognition, Product safety, Text recognition, visually-impaired

Blind and visually-impaired people cannot access essential information in the form of written text in our environment (e.g., on restaurant menus, street signs, door labels, product names and instructions, expiration dates). In this paper, we present and evaluate a mobile text-recognition system capable of extracting written information from a wide variety of sources and communicating it on-demand to the user. The user needs no additional hardware except an ordinary, Internet- enabled mobile camera-phone - a device that many visually-impaired individuals already own. This approach fills a gap in assistive technologies for the visually- impaired because it makes users aware of textual information not available to them through any other means.