Ford Develops Smart Window Prototype For Blind Passengers — Feel The View!
By Rahul Nagaraj
May 7, 2018, 12:49 [IST]
Ford has developed a prototype smart window, allowing blind passengers to feel the passing landscape outside.
The ‘Feel The View’ technology was created by an Italian startup, Aedo in collaboration with Ford. The prototype uses vibrations to give a blind or partially-sighted passenger a sense of the scenery outside.
The technology takes pictures of the passing scenery from the outer side of the window. The images captured are then converted into high-contrast black and white pictures.
These monochrome images are then reproduced on the glass using special LEDs. On touching the images, the various shades of grey vibrate at different intensities up to the range of 255. These vibrations allow the blind passengers to touch the scene and rebuild the landscape in their mind.
As the finger moves over the different parts of the image, different intensities of vibrations provide haptic feedback to the person using the technology.
The smart window technology also has an AI voice assistant, which uses the car’s audio system to give the passengers a context of what they are feeling.
A Ford spokesperson stated, “We seek to make people’s lives better and this was a fantastic opportunity to help blind passengers experience a great aspect of driving. The technology is advanced, but the concept is simple – and could turn mundane journeys into truly memorable ones.”
This technology of the Smart Windows is part of Ford’s Advanced Research. The company has no plans of introducing it in the market anytime soon. This might be part of Ford’s autonomous vehicle program to research how a vehicle will interact with its passengers when travelling.