Alternative Haptic Devices for People with Disabilities – Assistive Technology

May 8, 2010 at 9:58 am (Thesis)

Assistive technology (AT) is a generic term that includes assistive, adaptive, and rehabilitative devices for people with disabilities and includes the process used in selecting, locating, and using them. –

Some of the assistive devices on the market at the moment are very impressive and are currently giving me inspiration for my own haptic devices that I will need for my project. There are broad range of devices for the elderly also available.

The devices I am looking at for my project will be a switch and a hand-held remote control.

The switch is activated when a patients applies pressure using whatever part of their body is strongest e.g. head, neck, elbow, knee etc.

The remote control for my project will have a stand, which can be placed anywhere the patient desires.

I will collaborate with the Central Remedial Clinic in Raheen in Limerick to assist me with the design of my device.

The following video illustrates how a simple switch can control a remote control and in turn control a dvd player. The choice of music is a bit strange but it is a good example of the power of a switch

Click here for a simple explanation of alternative devices and how they work with computers

This is an emotive and poignant video outlining how assistive and augmented devices can benefit people both young and old.

I love the way she talks about people and interaction, innovation and independence, which is something able-bodied people take for granted including myself!

The more I look into these devices and how they can have such a profound effect on people with disabilities the more I want to learn! Technological advancements in the past ten years alone have opened so many doors for people with disabilities that would have otherwise remain shut. It is such a privilege to be able to help people with their rehabilitation and just their general happiness! To have the power to create something that patients will benefit greatly from is extremely overwhelming and if I’m honest a bit scary!


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