The MoBIC Project
The purpose of this project is to increase the independent
mobility of visually disabled people travelling in an
unknown environment by developing an orientation and
navigation aid. The project will concentrate on blind
people, but also address the needs of partially
sighted and elderly people.
If you are interested, choose one of the following topics:
Mobility and Blindness
Mobility often depends on the possibility of getting access
to information. The project aims at overcoming the
problems of blind people not having this information.
Blind persons cannot plan their journey, because they have
no information about the route to be taken and the location
to which they wish to travel. Orientation problems are
results of having insufficient information about their
position, orientation and the direction of their goal. Sighted
people have access to a variety of informational
sources to prepare a journey such as maps and timetables. For
people with visual disabilities, access to these informational
sources is restricted. The innovative aspect of this
project is to make such materials available to blind
people both before a journey for planning, and during a journey
for immediate consultation.
Objectives of the Project
One objective of this project is to develop a prototype
of an electronic travel aid comprising two interrelated
components. An pre-journey system will assist the
user to plan journeys. An outdoor system will carry out the
prepared plans by providing the user with navigation
assistance in outdoor environments. It consists of a handheld
computer with appropriate input and output devices
and a trip management system. It will be based on technology
emerging for non-disabled travellers like positioning systems,
compass and telecommunication services. Fixed
interfaces have to be specified to prevent the system
from being outdated by the rapidly changing technology in this
To ensure the usability of the resulting system,
an extensive part of the project will focus on user requirements. This
includes the participation of users in the
design and implementation phase of the project.
One outcome of the project will be a detailed specification
of user requirements which will be device independent.
Two field trials are carried out to evaluate the project
results against this specification.
The project considers standardisation activities to
ensure that the systems for visually disabled people are
compatible with the products for non-disabled consumers.
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The MoBIC Project at the University of Magdeburg: