Our objective is to decrease the unemployment rate amongst blind people (75 % in Europe; Source RNIB) by 10 % until 2028 by increasing their autonomy and productivity in the work environment. This is achieved by introducing a tool for blind people that enables the access to any information without the help of others.
This is achieved with the Tactonom, a tactile graphics display that is composed of 10.591 tactile points in a DIN A4 sized touch field. Plugged into a PC the tactile display performs the same task as a screen would for a sighted person. The new technology grants blind people instant access to information like tables (Excel), charts, graphs, diagrams, images, maps, forms, graphics, icons, flow charts, mind maps, and many more. For blind people the ability to instantly access such information is no less than a paradigm shift. This is because the currently existing output technologies (single line Braille Displays and Screen Readers) are only able to output text based information. This is insufficient because a vast amount of information is not text based but graphic visualization. However, these are not instantly accessible for blind people today. This diminishes the autonomy and productivity of blind people and blocks their access to many job profiles.
The Tactonom is a disruptive technology for two reasons:
1) it is the only technology that enables the access to all information types.
2) the new patented technology is 5 times cheaper per tactile than its cheapest competitor.
Both benefits combined will ensure that the 2.5 M blind and many of the 23.8 M visually impaired people (Source WHO) living in Europe can take active part in society and will not be left behind by the digital revolution. Also, blind people will be able to access new job profiles which leads to a strong reduction in the unemployment rate.
The technology exists as a prototype and has currently achieved the technology readiness level TRL 5.
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