The world was not made for blind people and getting around it when you can’t see can be very challenging. This is the 21st century, though, and there’s already technology available that can be put to use in helping blind folks navigate and do things otherwise impossible for them to do alone. Microsoft has taken up this cause and partnered with a number of organizations to develop a system that harnesses smartphones, wireless beacons, and bone-conducting headsets to reveal the surroundings to blind people in an intuitive way.
Beacons are used by the smartphone to know where the person is located and what is around, while the headset produces sounds to help the person hone in on a destination. Currently the system is being tested outside London in a limited trial, but if the concept proves out useful we may soon be tagging every sign, building, and anything else of interest so that blind people can participate in this world just like the rest of us.
Check out this video about the project:
(hat tip: Engadget)