OrCam Brings Sight to the Blind

9:38 AM

Imagine navigating your daily world without being able to see.  How could you get dressed in the morning?  How could you safely cross the street?  How could you even recognize the loved ones around you?

OrCam sits on the temple of your glasses, providing minimal bulk and disruption.  In
the past low vision aids have often been large and unwieldy, creating issues with
comfort and even with patients being able to adjust to their use.

OrCam is activated by finger pointing, making the design
user friendly.  Most older devices have required
head pointing and spotting through a magnified lens,
while the OrCam utilizes image recognition software that
has been utilized in security systems for years.
People with significant vision loss have to deal with these issues every single day, and luckily companies around the world are innovating ways to improve their lives.  One such company is OrCam, a start-up company that has launched a highly advanced camera system with image recognition software that is so non-intrusive that it can easily sit on the temples of your glasses (much like the design of Google Glass).  The software is programmed to "read" any text, recognize colors, common objects, and can even be programmed to recognize faces.  The camera's image recognition software connects to a small earpiece that the patient wears inside his ear (similar in design to an ear bud) that will translate the image into its English description.  You can point your camera at the closed caption TV screen and "watch" your favorite show as OrCam reads the words from the screen.  It can tell you how much money you are holding in your hand.  It can tell you if you are holding your credit card or your driver's license.  It can tell you if that light is green or red.  Or is that kid playing in the yard your grandson or a neighbor's kid?

Believe it or not, this isn't a technology that we are dreaming up, years away from the market.  You can purchase it now for just $2500 off their website.  Due to high demand, they are working to fill currently placed orders by the end of 2013.  If you or someone you love is vision impaired, consider scheduling them to see a Low Vision specialist to discuss all the products on the market that can make life easier.  OrCam appears to be easy to use and easy to fit, and your optometrist is a trained vision provider than can help you learn how to use these low vision aids and write the proper glasses prescription to maximize the use of the technology.

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