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Special Issue of Media Solutions That Improve Accessibility to Disabled Users

Special Issue of Media Solutions That Improve Accessibility to Disabled Users

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UBICC, the Ubiquitous Computing and Communication Journal [ISSN 1992-8424], is an international scientific and educational organization dedicated to advancing the arts, sciences, and applications of information technology. With a world-wide membership, UBICC is a leading resource for computing professionals and students working in the various fields of Information Technology, and for interpreting the impact of information technology on society.
UBICC, the Ubiquitous Computing and Communication Journal [ISSN 1992-8424], is an international scientific and educational organization dedicated to advancing the arts, sciences, and applications of information technology. With a world-wide membership, UBICC is a leading resource for computing professionals and students working in the various fields of Information Technology, and for interpreting the impact of information technology on society.

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02/28/2011

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UUBBIICCCCJJoouurrnnaall 
Ubiquitous Computing and Communication Journal 2010 Volume 5 . 2010-03-10 . ISSN 1992-8424
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Unconstrained walking plan to virtual environment for spatiallearning by visually impaired1Application of virtual reality technologies in rapid developmentand assessment of ambient assisted living environments8PIXAR animation studios and disabled personages case study:Finding NEMO16Web accessible design centered on user experience 23First steps towards determining the role of visual information inmusic communication32Examining the feasibility of face gesture detection for monitoringusers of autonomous wheel chairs42Personal localization in wearable camera platform towardsassistive technology for social interactions58
 
UBICC Publishers © 2010
 
Ubiquitous Computing and Communication Journal
 
 
 
Managing Editor
Dr. David Fonseca
Ubiquitous Computing andCommunication Journal
 
Book: 2010 Volume 5Publishing Date:
2010-03-10
 Proceedings
 ISSN 1994-4608
This work is subjected to copyright. All rights are reserved whether the whole or part of the materialis concerned, specifically the rights of translation, reprinting, re-use of illusions, recitation,broadcasting, reproduction on microfilms or in any other way, and storage in data banks.Duplication of this publication of parts thereof is permitted only under the provision of thecopyright law 1965, in its current version, and permission of use must always be obtained fromUBICC Publishers. Violations are liable to prosecution under the copy right law.UBICC Journal is a part of UBICC Publisherswww.ubicc.org© UBICC JournalPrinted in South KoreaTypesetting: Camera-ready by author, data conversation by UBICC Publishing Services, SouthKorea
Working to grow libraries indeveloping countries
UbiCC Journal
| www.ubicc.org
 
 
UNCONSTRAINED WALKING PLANE TO VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTFOR SPATIAL LEARNING BY VISUALLY IMPAIRED
Kanubhai K. Patel
1
, Dr. Sanjay Kumar Vij
2
 
1
School of ICT, Ahmedabad University, Ahmedabad, India, kkpatel7@gmail.com
2
Dept. of CE-IT-MCA, SVIT, Vasad, India, vijsanjay@gmail.com
ABSTRACT
Treadmill-style locomotion interfaces for locomotion in virtual environmenttypically have two problems that impact their usability: bulky or complex drivemechanism and stability problem. The bulky or complex drive mechanismrequirement restricts the practical use of this locomotion interface and stabilityproblem results in the induction of fear psychosis to the user. This paper describesa novel simple treadmill-style locomotion interface that uses manual treadmill withhandles to provide needbased support, thus allowing walking with assured stability.Its simplicity of design coupled with supervised multi-modal training facilitymakes it an effective device for spatial learning and thereby enhancing the mobilityskills of visually impaired people. It facilitates visually impaired person indeveloping cognitive maps of new and unfamiliar places through virtualenvironment exploration, so that they can navigate through such places with easeand confidence in real. In this paper, we describe the structure and controlmechanism of the device along with system architecture and experimental resultson general usability of the system.
Keywords:
assistive technology, blindness, cognitive maps, locomotion interface,Virtual learning environment.
1
 
INTRODUCTION
Unlike in case of sighted people, spatialinformation is not fully available to visuallyimpaired and blind people causing difficulties intheir mobility in new or unfamiliar locations. Thisconstraint can be overcome by providing mentalmapping of spaces, and of the possible paths fornavigating through these spaces which are essentialfor the development of efficient orientation andmobility skills. Orientation refers to the ability tosituate oneself relative to a frame of reference, andmobility is defined as “the ability to travel safely,comfortably, gracefully, and independently” [7, 18].Most of the information required for mental mappingis gathered through the visual channel [15]. Asvisually impaired people are handicapped to gatherthis crucial information, they face great difficultiesin generating efficient mental maps of spaces and,therefore, in navigating efficiently within new orunfamiliar spaces. Consequently, many visuallyimpaired people become passive, depending onothers for assistance. More than 30% of the blind donot ambulate independently outdoors [2, 16]. Suchassistance might not be required after a reasonablenumber of repeated visits to the new space as thesevisits enable formation of mental map of the newspace subconsciously. Thus, a good number of researchers focused on using technology to simulatevisits to a new space for building cognitive maps.Although isolated solutions have been attempted, nointegrated solution of spatial learning to visuallyimpaired people is available to the best of ourknowledge. Also most of the simulatedenvironments are far away from reality and thechallenge in this approach is to create a near real-lifeexperience.Use of advanced computer technology offersnew possibilities for supporting visually impairedpeople's acquisition of orientation and mobility skills,by compensating the deficiencies of the impairedchannel. The newer technologies including speechprocessing, computer haptics and virtual reality (VR)provide us various options in design andimplementation of a wide variety of multimodalapplications. Even for sighted people, suchtechnologies can be used (a) to enhance the visualinformation available to a person in such a way thatimportant features of a scene are presented visibly,or (b) to train them through virtual environmentleading to create cognitive maps of unfamiliar areasor (c) to get a feel of an object (using haptics) [16].Virtual Reality provides for creation of simulated objects and events with which people caninteract. The definitions of Virtual Reality (VR),although wide and varied, include a commonstatement that VR creates the illusion of participation in a synthetic environment rather than
UbiCC Journal, Volume 5, March 2010
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