Imagine trying to get a job in a country where you didn’t speak the language, and they didn’t speak yours. Think about how difficult it would be to impart your intentions and ideas to someone who had no idea what you were saying. Thats what it is like for about 2 or 3 people out of every 1,000 people in the United States alone, who are “functionally deaf.” Many of these deaf people communicate with sign language, which most hearing people don’t understand, surely technology has come far enough to offer a solution.
It finally has! Soon, deaf folks around the world can use a special tablet designed to actually translate their sign language into the spoken word. This device is being developed by a new company called MotionSavvy, and it is currently an indigogo crowd funding campaign. Called UNI, the actual device is a tablet case that contains a sophisticated high-speed sensor that is uniquely capable of sensing even the smallest of hand movements, and then translates those signs into text. Conversely, words spoken in response to those signs, are displayed as text for the user. Sign language on behalf of the speaker is unnecessary.
The design is well under way, with the biggest hurdle being the regional variances in signing, this issue is being addressed by UNI’s ability to constantly add new vocabulary into the system with CrowdSign uploads, and distribute those signs to all UNI users by way of large dictionary updates, which will quickly scale the number of signs that are available and recognized by the system.
So if you, or someone you love uses sign language, and could benefit from being able to communicate with those who don’t, you may want to find out more about UNI. Visit indiegogo.com and reserve one today for a final price under 200 bucks, with shipping expected in the last quarter of 2014. *Monthly service charges also apply.