SignAloud is a pair of gloves that can translate sign language into a verbal form instantaneously and in an ergonomic fashion. These gloves are a communication tool for people who may have trouble speaking and those who use sign language. Users simply wear the gloves and calibrate them and when they sign, the central computer associates their hand positions and gestures to a word or phrase which is verbally spoken. The gloves are extremely ergonomic and easy to carry on a day to day basis. They are made out of ergonomic materials to take away moisture from the user's hands and their minimalist design limits their impact to the user's day to day actions. The gloves link to a phone with bluetooth where they interact with an app that recognizes signs and gestures.
The gloves are made out of spandex, power mesh, and neoprene. The bottom part of the glove is made of spandex. Spandex is lightweight, stretchy, and provides good structural integrity to the glove. The bottom spandex is sewn to a piece of power mesh of the same shape to form the hand-shaped pocket for the user. Power mesh is a porous and extremely lightweight fabric that is also stretchy. There are two separate pieces of power mesh per glove: one for the top part of the glove and one to provide a hand-shaped pocket for flex sensor placement. The flex sensors are lightly constrained a pocket to extend the life of the sensors and reduce the amount of degradation while still maintaining data integrity. Power mesh is an ergonomic choice for the top part of the glove because it provides excellent ventilation to the user so their hands won't become sweaty or hot and it also adheres to the shape of the user's hand for minimal reduction in dexterity.
The gloves have a large potential for commercialization as their purpose can be applied across many fields for technological advancement and societal improvement. For example, the gloves can be used to monitor stroke patients during rehabilitation as they regain dexterity that they may have lost. In addition to being used as a communication device, they can be used as a learning aid to teach people sign language with instant feedback. The gloves also offer superior resolution to other hand gesture recognition devices such as the Myo Arm band, and the Leap Motion. The gloves are also more portable than these other devices as well as more ergonomic.
- 2017 Consumer Products Honorable Mention
- 2017 Top 100 Entries
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