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Development and Evaluation of a Communication

Device for Deaf People

Name of Author(s): Jariol, Lorraine, C.1 Marquez, Hazel Jane, P.2 Señerez, Vincent Thomas, D.
Author #1: B.S Computer Engineering, Sta. Ana, Tres de Mayo, Digos City, Davao del Sur,
Author #2: B.S Electronics Engineering, Mabini Extension, Digos City, Davao del Sur,
Author #3: B.S Computer Engineering, Tres de Mayo, Digos City, Davao del Sur,


In general, deaf people have difficulty in communicating with others who do not un-
derstand sign language. This project utilizes a wearable glove fitted with flex
sensors and accelerometer. These sensors translate the hand gestures to
corresponding letters, numbers and basic phrases in accordance with the American
Sign Language. For speech synthesis, a text to speech module converts these
movements of hand into real time speech expressed through the speaker. In order
for the deaf to understand what other people had been saying, a speech to text con-
version will be executed through an android application. This application would also
display the corresponding letters, numbers and phrases of every gesture being

Keywords: Flex Sensors, Accelerometer, Text to Speech,

Android Application
Figure 1. Diagrammatic Representation of the Results of the Survey
INTRODUCTION On the survey being conducted, results showed that out of the fifteen deaf students who
According to the International Mission Board, this year’s Philippine census states that there answered the questionnaire, twelve found communicating with others very difficult, two
are approximately 498,000 deaf people living in the country. The deaf communities use the find it moderately difficult and one find it difficult. This is because majority of the other
sign language as a communication medium. However, not all people can comprehend sign students in their school do not use sign language. Instead, some students only used lip
language which consists of gesture-based communication, thus creating a gap of commu- reading and exchanging of notes in order to communicate with them.
nication between deaf and other people (Nagori and Malode, 2016). As a result, a two-
way conversation involving sign language and speech would be very difficult for deaf peo-
ple and other people (Shraddha, 2015). Up until now, there has been no easy method of The system was tested according to the number of correct executions of letters, numbers
accomplishing this process. and basic phrases. Each letter and number in the ASL had specific digital level for the five
fingers; each level is represented by a value between 100 to 799. All the basic phrases
and words being executed had digital values on the three axis of accelerometer (x,y.z).A
In view of the foregoing issues encountered between the communication of deaf and other delay of 2 seconds was taken into consideration since the user could not keep her hand
people, this project has been developed to provide a means to lessen the gap; hence, giv- steady. Being performed correctly, the gestures (letters, numbers, phrases, words) were
ing convenience to all. A sign language recognition system is created to assist the deaf converted into voice output. An android integration was created to display the gestures
people to communicate with other people. In this project, the technology for hand gesture corresponding meaning in text form. It also facilitated the speech to text conversion in
recognition is the data-glove approach which use special glove-based device to extract order for the deaf to understand other people. In general, the desired results were
hand posture and motion. The glove will utilize microcontroller as the processor, and flex achieved.
sensors and accelerometer as the sensors to identify hand pose that represent alphabet,
number and basic phrases from American Sign Language. The translation of gestures will
be displayed on a smart phone facilitated by means of an android application.

This communication device is designed in such a way that it can aid the deaf people and
other people to have a two-way communication. It also offered a user full control in the con-
version, translation and display of the message. For we all know, allowing the deaf to com-
municate with others will lessen their life difficulty, hence having a positive impact on their
integration into the society.

The general objective of this project is to develop a system that could bridge or lessen the
communication gap between deaf and other people. Specifically, it aims to implement a
system that converts speech of a person into text as well as translate and convert sign lan- Figure 2. Photos of the Working Glove Showing Figure 3. Android Integration
guage into an oral language understandable for other people. Furthermore, this project Various Alphabets
aims to help deaf people to communicate easily with others in order to fully experience one
of the fundamental aspects in life which is through communicating.
The glove is capable of translating their sign language gestures into speech according to
the American Sign Language Standard through text to speech conversion module and
MATERIALS AND METHODS an android phone. This study focuses the translation of gestures of the alphabets,
In order to attain the success of this project, the system started with a planning procedure numbers, basic phrases and signs; however, a few words can still be added in the library
which involves finding what the real problem is and having a scheme to resolve it. In order of gestures without any change in the design of the glove as long as the memory of the
to determine the extent of finding the solution as well as the rate of difficulty between the microcontroller is not full. Comparing with other approaches, it has speech to text
communications of a deaf person with others, a survey was conducted on the junior high conversion through an android application to fully achieve a two-way communication.
school deaf students enrolled in Digos City National High School (DiCNHS). The authors are committed to upgrade the performance of the glove translator with mate-
rials that could make its cost accessible to all whom need it, in order to improve the qual-
The Systems Development Life Cycle (SDLC) identifies all the activities required to build, ity of life of the deaf community.
launch, and maintain an information system. Analysis and design conceptualizes the ap-
propriate hardware and software needed to enhance the functionality of the device. The ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
technicality of the device is monitored in the testing procedure. User acceptance is the Nobody has been more important in the pursuit of this project than the Almighty God who
most important factor in this project and considered to be the only reason for the implemen- is the source of wisdom, love and peace. Without Him, this study would have not been
tation of the project. possible.

To attain the set of objectives of this study, various devices are needed according to its To Engr. Hec Perry Xerxes Santos, ECT for his recommendations and guidance to the
function and contribution to the system. Below are the required devices, equipment and researchers; To Engr. Jamie Eduardo Rosal for his intellectual support in the field of
components together with its specifications. programming and analysis matters; To Engr. Juvy Amor Galindo,MEP for being
supportive and always been providing the researchers logical advices to pursue the
Speaker Voice Output objectives of the study. To Engr. Jonathan Tungal, MBA, for giving corrections on the
organization and content of the study; To their classmates and friends, for the support
Text Display and encouragements of this design project and always had the pleasure to work and cri-
Android Phone (Gesture to Text Conversion) tique the documentation of the study;
(Speech to Text Conversion)
Finally, no words can describe how grateful the researchers are to their parents whose
love and guidance together with the financial, emotional and moral support is always
Bluetooth Module Android Integration given throughout their life in college.

C Language Programming Language REFERENCES

Nagori, N.P. and Malode, V. 2016. Communication Interface for Deaf-Mute People using Mi-
Text to Speech Module Text to Speech Conversion crosoft Kinect, International Conference on Automatic Control and Dynamic Optimization Tech-
niques (ICACDOT), pp. 640-644.
Flex Sensors Resistance output correlated to the bending of fingers Shraddha, R.,Ghorpade, S., et al. 2015.Full Duplex Communication System for Deaf & Dumb
Peopl, International Journal of Emerging Technology and Advanced Engineering, Vol. 5, ISSN
Accelerometer Position of gestures in terms of coordinates (x,y,z)
2250-2459, ISO 9001:2008.
International Mission Board, SBC. (2017, October 7). Deaf Filipinos of Philippines. Retrieved