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back to article Descriptive Camera develops text instead of images

A camera for the blind sounds almost as pointless as a comb for baldies or a pedal-powered wheelchair, yet with the Descriptive Camera - a snapper that chronicles an image in text - the possibility seems less absurd. New York University graduate Matt Richardson had a flash of genius and decided a picture should indeed tell a …

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3-6mins = not great for taking on safari

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It is a Bengal tiger. It is

looking at you and is running

towards you with its jaws

wide open.

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WTF?

Why not just print out in braille or braille AND standard text? And no offence, but how would a blind person know where to point the camera unless a person was the subject of the picture and thus could indicate where to point and shoot, in which case, as voice files can be attached to pictures (at least on my Fuji HS20EXR) they could add an appropriate commentary anyway.

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Good points mate.

I think with regards to targeting, audiable cues might be there in some rare circumstances. As for braille, that would take thicker paper the the graphene-thin thermal stuff that it seems to be using, plus much more power to physically form the dots. I remember years ago seeing on TV a bloke who had devised a way to print braille on a bog standard dot matrix. It involved a soft backing sheet, decent gsm paper, and 6x passes of the print head.

Still I suppose every cool tech starts out crap. And many stay that way. *coughC5cough*

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The printed text doesn't look too easy to read...

perhaps this would be better implemented in a smartphone with text-to-speech?

(I am aware that there are degrees and variety of what we consider 'blind'... some people have vision that appears 'fractured', with some small areas perfectly visible... ie some registered blind people could read this camera's print-out. )

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Windows

Oh dear

What's to stop abuse?

Are the image description multi-sourced?

You could really mess with people.

Just sayin....

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Missing a trick

Couldn't have just given one prototype to Damien Hirst, bunged it in White Cube and split the proceeds?

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Alert

Open to abuse

"The designer did throw in the option of sending the picture to available online friends for a free description instead, though."

---------------------------------------------------------------------

This is a picture of...wait, what is that? It looks kind

of like a shrivelled frankfurter sausage and two

scotch eggs covered in hair?....oh, no wait, it can't be

... oh sweet lord! Gross, Dave, seriously gross

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Is that normal?

What? Taking a double Polaroid of it and showing it to your mates? No!

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Anonymous Coward

"this would need to be vocalised somehow"

Anyone else thinking of the Tommorrows World sketch on Not the Nine O'Clock news and the device to let deaf people know when their telephone is ringing!

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Boffin

"Anyone else thinking of the Tommorrows World sketch on Not the Nine O'Clock news and the device to let deaf people know when their telephone is ringing!"

Not wanting to bring a downer on what was (mostly) an excellent programme, but deaf people do (or did, in the days before they all got SMS and email and instant messaging) use telephones. For one-to-one conversations there is the textphone (basically a modem with a keyboard and a small display) which can be used directly to another textphone user or via BT's typetalk service. For other things a lot of deaf users used fax machines.

Either of those works a lot better if you know when there's an incoming call :-)

Hwyl!

M.

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"deaf people do... use telephones. For one-to-one conversations there is the textphone... or via BT's typetalk service"

To be a little pedantic the NTNON sketch used an analogue dial-faced telephone. Whether this was plain irony or they couldn't get hold of a textphone at the time, I'll leave you to decide 8-)

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...as pointless as a ... pedal-powered wheelchair

See

http://flic.kr/p/8dVjM3

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What do you want to do now?

You are standing in an open field west of a white house, with a boarded front door.

There is a small mailbox here.

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Re: What do you want to do now?

East

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Re: What do you want to do now?

It is pitch black. You are likely to be eaten by a grue.

Either that or take the lens cap off.

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"Mechanical Turk".

So it sends him the picture and he types the response?

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Stop

Exactly what I was thinking. Why not just ask a passerby to describe the scene for you?

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If a blind person doesnt know what the objects being described look like, what use is telling them about it going to do?

"oh great, there's a giraffe over there eating green leaves from a tree, and there's a stunning orange sun setting in the background....

"ok now i have questions. What is green? What is orange? What does a giraffe look like? and finally is the tree large, small, old, young?"

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On the other hand, you could also have:

"You are looking into a refrigerator. Inside on the top shelf there is a Bud Light on the left, a Pabst in the middle, and a Heineken on the right. On the shelf below there is a two liter bottle of Mountain Dew. Non-diet."

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LOL @ Nothing in the fridge except for similarly shaped bottles

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What I really liked...

about this camera (or whatever this is) are the status lights .

I suppose they will work as well as a pedal powered wheelchair

R

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