When school-goers talk about change, we often assume they are talking about their hobbies, areas of interest, studying schedule or a career path. But when this 16-year-old talks about change, he means changing the lives of people on a larger scale.
Arsh Shah Dilbagi, a student from Delhi, invented TALK, an Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) Device that helps people with developmental disabilities like Locked-In Syndrome, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Parkinson’s Disease, those with speech impairments like Dysarthia and even Mutes, to communicate in a normal form of speech.
ts simple design, affordability and portability are what make TALK unique. TALK is the only AAC Device in the world which uses breath as the way of interaction. The technology uses the variations in a person’s breath and helps him or her to dictate letters, which are further combined and synthesized as sentences. The device is so compact that it fits into your pocket.
TALK was selected as one of the Top 15 Projects of Google Science Fair 2014, and Dilbagi will be going to the Google headquarters in Mountain View, USA this month to present his idea to a larger audience.
How does TALK work?
Unlike other AAC devices, TALK doesn’t restrict users to a wheelchair, which makes it more comfortable and accessible. TALK has nine different voices for different genders and age groups.
It takes only 0.4 sec to dictate ‘E’ and 0.8 sec to dictate ‘A’ using TALK, which makes it one of the fastest AAC devices. The user has to place the sensor under the nose and make shorter and longer exhales to send dots and dashes which later get converted into words and phrases.
It works in two modes – Communication mode and Command mode. Using the Command Mode, the user can speak out predefined commands like W – ‘Water’. The Communication Mode helps in encoding and speaking out commonly used phrases. For instance, dictating “HH” can speak out “Hello, How are you?”
Posted By: Maria Fe Delicana