Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 1989

Search results for: assistive devices for neurorehabilitation

1989 PYTHEIA: A Scale for Assessing Rehabilitation and Assistive Robotics

Authors: Yiannis Koumpouros, Effie Papageorgiou, Alexandra Karavasili, Foteini Koureta

Abstract:

The objective of the present study was to develop a scale called PYTHEIA. The PYTHEIA is a self-reported measure for the assessment of rehabilitation and assistive robotics and other assistive technology devices. The development of PYTHEIA faced the absence of a valid instrument that can be used to evaluate the assistive robotic devices both as a whole, as well as any of their individual components or functionalities implemented. According to the results presented, PYTHEIA is a valid and reliable scale able to be applied to different target groups for the subjective evaluation of various assistive technology devices.

Keywords: rehabilitation, assistive technology, assistive robots, rehabilitation robots, scale, psychometric test, assessment, validation, user satisfaction

Procedia PDF Downloads 208
1988 Design for Sentiment-ancy: Conceptual Framework to Improve User’s Well-being Through Fostering Emotional Attachment in the Use Experience with Their Assistive Devices

Authors: Seba Quqandi

Abstract:

This study investigates the bond that people form using their assistive devices and the tactics applied during the product design process to help improve the user experience leading to a long-term product relationship. The aim is to develop a conceptual framework with which to describe and analyze the bond people form with their assistive devices and to integrate human emotions as a factor during the development of the product design process. The focus will be on the assistive technology market, namely, the Aid-For-Daily-Living market for situational impairments, to increase the quality of wellbeing. Findings will help us better understand the real issues of the product experience concerning people’s interaction throughout the product performance, establish awareness of the emotional effects in the daily interaction that fosters the product attachment, and help product developers and future designers create a connection between users and their assistive devices. The research concludes by discussing the implications of these findings for professionals and academics in the form of experiments in order to identify new areas that can stimulate new /or developed design directions.

Keywords: experience design, interaction design, emotion, design psychology, assistive tools, customization, userentred design

Procedia PDF Downloads 99
1987 Estimation of Forces Applied to Forearm Using EMG Signal Features to Control of Powered Human Arm Prostheses

Authors: Faruk Ortes, Derya Karabulut, Yunus Ziya Arslan

Abstract:

Myoelectric features gathering from musculature environment are considered on a preferential basis to perceive muscle activation and control human arm prostheses according to recent experimental researches. EMG (electromyography) signal based human arm prostheses have shown a promising performance in terms of providing basic functional requirements of motions for the amputated people in recent years. However, these assistive devices for neurorehabilitation still have important limitations in enabling amputated people to perform rather sophisticated or functional movements. Surface electromyogram (EMG) is used as the control signal to command such devices. This kind of control consists of activating a motion in prosthetic arm using muscle activation for the same particular motion. Extraction of clear and certain neural information from EMG signals plays a major role especially in fine control of hand prosthesis movements. Many signal processing methods have been utilized for feature extraction from EMG signals. The specific objective of this study was to compare widely used time domain features of EMG signal including integrated EMG(IEMG), root mean square (RMS) and waveform length(WL) for prediction of externally applied forces to human hands. Obtained features were classified using artificial neural networks (ANN) to predict the forces. EMG signals supplied to process were recorded during only type of muscle contraction which is isometric and isotonic one. Experiments were performed by three healthy subjects who are right-handed and in a range of 25-35 year-old aging. EMG signals were collected from muscles of the proximal part of the upper body consisting of: biceps brachii, triceps brachii, pectorialis major and trapezius. The force prediction results obtained from the ANN were statistically analyzed and merits and pitfalls of the extracted features were discussed with detail. The obtained results are anticipated to contribute classification process of EMG signal and motion control of powered human arm prosthetics control.

Keywords: assistive devices for neurorehabilitation, electromyography, feature extraction, force estimation, human arm prosthesis

Procedia PDF Downloads 290
1986 Virtual Reality Application for Neurorehabilitation

Authors: Daniel Vargas-Herrera, Ivette Caldelas, Fernando Brambila-Paz, Rodrigo Montufar-Chaveznava

Abstract:

In this paper, we present a virtual reality application for neurorehabilitation. This application was developed using the Unity SDK integrating the Oculus Rift and Leap Motion devices. Essentially, it consists of three stages according to the kind of rehabilitation to carry on: ocular rehabilitation, head/neck rehabilitation, and eye-hand coordination. We build three scenes for each task; for ocular and head/neck rehabilitation, there are different objects moving in the field of view and extended field of view of the user according to some patterns relative to the therapy. In the third stage the user must try to touch with the hand some objects guided by its view. We report the primer results of the use of the application with healthy people.

Keywords: virtual reality, interactive technologies, video games, neurorehabilitation

Procedia PDF Downloads 289
1985 A New Mechanical Architecture Design of a Multifunctional Bed for Bedridden Healthcare

Authors: Rogelio Portillo Vélez, Eduardo Vázquez-Santacruz, Mariano Gamboa-Zúñiga

Abstract:

In this paper a new mechanical architecture design of a multi functional robot bed, is presented. The importance of this design relies on the fact that in next years the need of assistive devices development will increase in such way that elderly patients will use this kind of devices. This mechanical design implies following specific mechanisms which attend Mexican hospital requirements. This design is the base of next step of this kind of development given that it shows all technical details of the mechanical systems which are needed in order to construct the bed. This is first hospital bed design which could responds to the Latin America hospital requirements. We have obtained these hospital requirements using our diagnosis methodology [14]. From these results we have designed the mechanical system. This is the mechanical base of the hospital robotic bed which is being developed in our robotics laboratory. It will be useful in different hospital environments for elderly and disabled patients.

Keywords: assistive robotics, methodology, feasibility analysis, robotics, operational feasibility, assistive technology, viability analysis matrix, social impact

Procedia PDF Downloads 292
1984 Assistive Kitchenware Design for Hemiparetics

Authors: Daniel F. Madrinan-Chiquito

Abstract:

Hemiparesis affects about eight out of ten stroke survivors, causing weakness or the inability to move one side of the body. One-sided weakness can affect arms, hands, legs, or facial muscles. People with one-sided weakness may have trouble performing everyday activities such as eating, cooking, dressing, and using the bathroom. Rehabilitation treatments, exercises at home, and assistive devices can help with mobility and recovery. Historically, such treatments and devices were developed within the fields of medicine and biomedical engineering. However, innovators outside of the traditional medical device community, such as Industrial Designers, have recently brought their knowledge and expertise to assistive technologies. Primary and secondary research was done in three parts. The primary research collected data by talking with several occupational therapists currently attending to stroke patients, and surveys were given to patients with hemiparesis and hemiplegia. The secondary research collected data through observation and testing of products currently marketed for single-handed people. Modern kitchenware available in the market for people with an acquired brain injury has deficiencies in both aesthetic and functional values. Object design for people with hemiparesis or hemiplegia has not been meaningfully explored. Most cookware is designed for use with two hands and possesses little room for adaptation to the needs of one-handed individuals. This project focuses on the design and development of two kitchenware devices. These devices assist hemiparetics with different cooking-related tasks such as holding, grasping, cutting, slicing, chopping, grating, and other essential activities. These intentionally designed objects will improve the quality of life of hemiparetics by enabling greater independence and providing an enhanced ability for precision tasks in a cooking environment.

Keywords: assistive technologies, hemiparetics, industrial design, kitchenware

Procedia PDF Downloads 42
1983 Mechanical Properties and Thermal Comfort of 3D Printed Hand Orthosis for Neurorehabilitation

Authors: Paulo H. R. G. Reis, Joana P. Maia, Davi Neiva Alves, Mariana R. C. Aquino, Igor B. Guimaraes, Anderson Horta, Thiago Santiago, Mariana Volpini

Abstract:

Additive manufacturing is a manufacturing technique used in many fields as a tool for the production of complex parts accurately. This technique has a wide possibility of applications in bioengineering, mainly in the manufacture of orthopedic devices, thanks to the versatility of shapes and surface details. The present article aims to evaluate the mechanical viability of a wrist-hand orthosis made using additive manufacturing techniques with Nylon 12 polyamide and compare this device with the wrist-hand orthosis manufactured by the traditional process with thermoplastic Ezeform. The methodology used is based on the application of computational simulations of voltage and temperature, from finite element analysis, in order to evaluate the properties of displacement, mechanical stresses and thermal comfort in the two devices. The execution of this work was carried out through a case study with a 29-year-old male patient. The modeling software involved was Meshmixer from US manufacturer Autodesk and Fusion 360 from the same manufacturer. The results demonstrated that the orthosis developed by 3D printing, from Nylon 12, presents better thermal comfort and response to the mechanical stresses exerted on the orthosis.

Keywords: additive manufacturing, finite elements, hand orthosis, thermal comfort, neurorehabilitation

Procedia PDF Downloads 97
1982 Mathematical Description of Functional Motion and Application as a Feeding Mode for General Purpose Assistive Robots

Authors: Martin Leroux, Sylvain Brisebois

Abstract:

Eating a meal is among the Activities of Daily Living, but it takes a lot of time and effort for people with physical or functional limitations. Dedicated technologies are cumbersome and not portable, while general-purpose assistive robots such as wheelchair-based manipulators are too hard to control for elaborate continuous motion like eating. Eating with such devices has not previously been automated, since there existed no description of a feeding motion for uncontrolled environments. In this paper, we introduce a feeding mode for assistive manipulators, including a mathematical description of trajectories for motions that are difficult to perform manually such as gathering and scooping food at a defined/desired pace. We implement these trajectories in a sequence of movements for a semi-automated feeding mode which can be controlled with a very simple 3-button interface, allowing the user to have control over the feeding pace. Finally, we demonstrate the feeding mode with a JACO robotic arm and compare the eating speed, measured in bites per minute of three eating methods: a healthy person eating unaided, a person with upper limb limitations or disability using JACO with manual control, and a person with limitations using JACO with the feeding mode. We found that the feeding mode allows eating about 5 bites per minute, which should be sufficient to eat a meal under 30min.

Keywords: assistive robotics, automated feeding, elderly care, trajectory design, human-robot interaction

Procedia PDF Downloads 95
1981 Modeling and Control of a 4DoF Robotic Assistive Device for Hand Rehabilitation

Authors: Christopher Spiewak, M. R. Islam, Mohammad Arifur Rahaman, Mohammad H. Rahman, Roger Smith, Maarouf Saad

Abstract:

For those who have lost the ability to move their hand, going through repetitious motions with the assistance of a therapist is the main method of recovery. We have been developed a robotic assistive device to rehabilitate the hand motions in place of the traditional therapy. The developed assistive device (RAD-HR) is comprised of four degrees of freedom enabling basic movements, hand function, and assists in supporting the hand during rehabilitation. We used a nonlinear computed torque control technique to control the RAD-HR. The accuracy of the controller was evaluated in simulations (MATLAB/Simulink environment). To see the robustness of the controller external disturbance as modelling uncertainty (±10% of joint torques) were added in each joints.

Keywords: biorobotics, rehabilitation, robotic assistive device, exoskeleton, nonlinear control

Procedia PDF Downloads 343
1980 New HCI Design Process Education

Authors: Jongwan Kim

Abstract:

Human Computer Interaction (HCI) is a subject covering the study, plan, and design of interactions between humans and computers. The prevalent use of digital mobile devices is increasing the need for education and research on HCI. This work is focused on a new education method geared towards reducing errors while developing application programs that incorporate role-changing brainstorming techniques during HCI design process. The proposed method has been applied to a capstone design course in the last spring semester. Students discovered some examples about UI design improvement and their error discovering and reducing capability was promoted. An UI design improvement, PC voice control for people with disabilities as an assistive technology examplar, will be presented. The improvement of these students' design ability will be helpful to the real field work.

Keywords: HCI, design process, error reducing education, role-changing brainstorming, assistive technology

Procedia PDF Downloads 418
1979 Disability, Technology and Inclusion: Fostering and Inclusive Pedagogical Approach in an Interdisciplinary Project

Authors: M. Lopez-Pereyra, I. Cisneros Alvarado, M. Del Socorro Lobato Alba

Abstract:

This paper aims to discuss a conceptual, pedagogical approach that foster inclusive education and that create an awareness of the use of assistive technology in Mexico. Interdisciplinary understanding of disabilities and the use of assistive technology as a frame for an inclusive education have challenged the reality of the researchers’ participation in decision-making. Drawing upon a pedagogical inquiry process within an interdisciplinary academic project that involved the sciences, design, biotechnology, psychology and education fields, this paper provides a discussion on the challenges of assistive technology and inclusive education in interdisciplinary research on disabilities and technology project. This study is frame on an educational action research design where the team is interested in integrating, disability, technology, and inclusion, theory, and practice. Major findings include: (1) the concept of inclusive education as a strategy for interdisciplinary research; (2) inclusion as a pedagogical approach that challenges the creation of assistive technology from diverse academic fields; and, (3) inclusion as a frame, problem-focused, for decision-making. The findings suggest that inclusive pedagogical approaches provide a unique insight into interdisciplinary teams on disability and assistive technology in education.

Keywords: assistive technology, inclusive education, inclusive pedagogy, interdisciplinary research

Procedia PDF Downloads 71
1978 Using Assistive Technologies in Teaching Children with Disabilities in Jordan: Teachers' Perceptions

Authors: Kholoud Adeeb. Al-Dababneh

Abstract:

This study aimed at investigating teachers' perceptions of using assistive technologies in teaching children with disabilities in Jordan. The researcher developed a study instrument (questionnaire) to examine teachers' perceptions regarding the use of assistive technologies in teaching children with disabilities. The validity and reliability of the research instrument were checked. A random sample of 260 teachers who teach children with disabilities participated in the study by completing the questionnaire; fifteen teachers were later interviewed. Results revealed that the use of assistive technology by teachers in teaching children with disabilities was high. The results also revealed that there are statistically significant differences at (α= .05) according to the type of disability in favor of teachers of children with specific learning disabilities (SLD), according to educational settings in favor of local public schools (inclusion settings). The results revealed that there were no statistically significant differences attributed to the teacher's level of education and teachers' gender. In light of the study results, the researcher addressed several recommendations and future implications.

Keywords: assistive technologies, children with disabilities, Jordan, teachers

Procedia PDF Downloads 35
1977 Control Strategies for a Robot for Interaction with Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Authors: Vinicius Binotte, Guilherme Baldo, Christiane Goulart, Carlos Valadão, Eliete Caldeira, Teodiano Bastos

Abstract:

Socially assistive robotic has become increasingly active and it is present in therapies of people affected for several neurobehavioral conditions, such as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). In fact, robots have played a significant role for positive interaction with children with ASD, by stimulating their social and cognitive skills. This work introduces a mobile socially-assistive robot, which was built for interaction with children with ASD, using non-linear control techniques for this interaction.

Keywords: socially assistive robotics, mobile robot, autonomous control, autism

Procedia PDF Downloads 340
1976 Students Competencies in the Use of Computer Assistive Technology at Akropong School for the Blind in the Eastern of Ghana

Authors: Joseph Ampratwum, Yaw Nyadu Offei, Afua Ntoaduro, Frank Twum

Abstract:

The use of computer assistive technology has captured the attention of individuals with visual impairment. Children with visual impairments who are tactual learners have one unique need which is quite different from all other disability groups. They depend on the use of computer assistive technology for reading, writing, receiving information and sending information as well. The objective of the study was to assess students’ competencies in the use of computer assistive technology at Akropong School for the Blind in Ghana. This became necessary because little research has been conducted to document the competencies and challenges in the use of computer among students with visual impairments in Africa. A case study design with a mixed research strategy was adopted for the study. A purposive sampling technique was used to sample 35 students from Akropong School for the Blind in the eastern region of Ghana. The researcher gathered both quantitative and qualitative data to measure students’ competencies in keyboarding skills and Job Access with Speech (JAWS), as well as the other challenges. The findings indicated that comparatively students’ competency in keyboard skills was higher than JAWS application use. Thus students had reached higher stages in the conscious competencies matrix in the former than the latter. It was generally noted that challenges limiting effective use of students’ competencies in computer assistive technology in the School were more personal than external influences. This was because most of the challenges were due to the individual response to the training and familiarity in developing their competencies in using computer assistive technology. Base on this it was recommended that efforts should be made to stock up the laboratory with additional computers. Directly in line with the first recommendation, it was further suggested that more practice time should be created for the students to maximize computer use. Also Licensed JAWS must be acquired by the school to advance students’ competence in using computer assistive technology.

Keywords: computer assistive technology, job access with speech, keyboard, visual impairment

Procedia PDF Downloads 256
1975 A Brain Controlled Robotic Gait Trainer for Neurorehabilitation

Authors: Qazi Umer Jamil, Abubakr Siddique, Mubeen Ur Rehman, Nida Aziz, Mohsin I. Tiwana

Abstract:

This paper discusses a brain controlled robotic gait trainer for neurorehabilitation of Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) patients. Patients suffering from Spinal Cord Injuries (SCI) become unable to execute motion control of their lower proximities due to degeneration of spinal cord neurons. The presented approach can help SCI patients in neuro-rehabilitation training by directly translating patient motor imagery into walkers motion commands and thus bypassing spinal cord neurons completely. A non-invasive EEG based brain-computer interface is used for capturing patient neural activity. For signal processing and classification, an open source software (OpenVibe) is used. Classifiers categorize the patient motor imagery (MI) into a specific set of commands that are further translated into walker motion commands. The robotic walker also employs fall detection for ensuring safety of patient during gait training and can act as a support for SCI patients. The gait trainer is tested with subjects, and satisfactory results were achieved.

Keywords: brain computer interface (BCI), gait trainer, spinal cord injury (SCI), neurorehabilitation

Procedia PDF Downloads 75
1974 SLIITBOT: Design of a Socially Assistive Robot for SLIIT

Authors: Chandimal Jayawardena, Ridmal Mendis, Manoji Tennakoon, Theekshana Wijayathilaka, Randima Marasinghe

Abstract:

This research paper defines the research area of the implementation of the socially assistive robot (SLIITBOT). It consists of the overall process implemented within the robot’s system and limitations, along with a literature survey. This project considers developing a socially assistive robot called SLIITBOT that will interact using its voice outputs and graphical user interface with people within the university and benefit them with updates and tasks. The robot will be able to detect a person when he/she enters the room, navigate towards the position the human is standing, welcome and greet the particular person with a simple conversation using its voice, introduce the services through its voice, and provide the person with services through an electronic input via an app while guiding the person with voice outputs.

Keywords: application, detection, dialogue, navigation

Procedia PDF Downloads 59
1973 Exploring the Factors Affecting the Dependability of Mobile Devices in the Current World

Authors: Mayowa A. Sofowora, Seraphim D. Eyono Obono

Abstract:

In recent times the level of advancement in electronics and manufacturing technologies for portable electronic devices, especially for mobile devices such as cell phones, smartphones, personal digital assistants and tablet computers is unprecedented. Mobile devices have become indispensable to individuals, and businesses all over the world. The high level of manufacturing and production of mobile devices has led to the rapid release of newer and sleeker models with new features and capabilities. However, these newer models therefore render older models obsolete, and this pushes people to frequently replace their devices. The drawback of such frequent replacements is that a large number of devices are disposed and they end up as e-waste. The fact that e-waste constitutes a major hazard to human health and to the environment is the motivation behind this study whose aim is to develop a model of possible factors that affects the dependability of mobile devices which in turn leads to the obsolescence of these devices.

Keywords: dependability, mobile devices, obsolescence, e-waste

Procedia PDF Downloads 241
1972 Braille Lab: A New Design Approach for Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Assistive Tools for the Visually Impaired

Authors: Claudio Loconsole, Daniele Leonardis, Antonio Brunetti, Gianpaolo Francesco Trotta, Nicholas Caporusso, Vitoantonio Bevilacqua

Abstract:

Unfortunately, many people still do not have access to communication, with specific regard to reading and writing. Among them, people who are blind or visually impaired, have several difficulties in getting access to the world, compared to the sighted. Indeed, despite technology advancement and cost reduction, nowadays assistive devices are still expensive such as Braille-based input/output systems which enable reading and writing texts (e.g., personal notes, documents). As a consequence, assistive technology affordability is fundamental in supporting the visually impaired in communication, learning, and social inclusion. This, in turn, has serious consequences in terms of equal access to opportunities, freedom of expression, and actual and independent participation to a society designed for the sighted. Moreover, the visually impaired experience difficulties in recognizing objects and interacting with devices in any activities of daily living. It is not a case that Braille indications are commonly reported only on medicine boxes and elevator keypads. Several software applications for the automatic translation of written text into speech (e.g., Text-To-Speech - TTS) enable reading pieces of documents. However, apart from simple tasks, in many circumstances TTS software is not suitable for understanding very complicated pieces of text requiring to dwell more on specific portions (e.g., mathematical formulas or Greek text). In addition, the experience of reading\writing text is completely different both in terms of engagement, and from an educational perspective. Statistics on the employment rate of blind people show that learning to read and write provides the visually impaired with up to 80% more opportunities of finding a job. Especially in higher educational levels, where the ability to digest very complex text is key, accessibility and availability of Braille plays a fundamental role in reducing drop-out rate of the visually impaired, thus affecting the effectiveness of the constitutional right to get access to education. In this context, the Braille Lab project aims at overcoming these social needs by including affordability in designing and developing assistive tools for visually impaired people. In detail, our awarded project focuses on a technology innovation of the operation principle of existing assistive tools for the visually impaired leaving the Human-Machine Interface unchanged. This can result in a significant reduction of the production costs and consequently of tool selling prices, thus representing an important opportunity for social entrepreneurship. The first two assistive tools designed within the Braille Lab project following the proposed approach aims to provide the possibility to personally print documents and handouts and to read texts written in Braille using refreshable Braille display, respectively. The former, named ‘Braille Cartridge’, represents an alternative solution for printing in Braille and consists in the realization of an electronic-controlled dispenser printing (cartridge) which can be integrated within traditional ink-jet printers, in order to leverage the efficiency and cost of the device mechanical structure which are already being used. The latter, named ‘Braille Cursor’, is an innovative Braille display featuring a substantial technology innovation by means of a unique cursor virtualizing Braille cells, thus limiting the number of active pins needed for Braille characters.

Keywords: Human rights, social challenges and technology innovations, visually impaired, affordability, assistive tools

Procedia PDF Downloads 181
1971 User Requirements Analysis for the Development of Assistive Navigation Mobile Apps for Blind and Visually Impaired People

Authors: Paraskevi Theodorou, Apostolos Meliones

Abstract:

In the context of the development process of two assistive navigation mobile apps for blind and visually impaired people (BVI) an extensive qualitative analysis of the requirements of potential users has been conducted. The analysis was based on interviews with BVIs and aimed to elicit not only their needs with respect to autonomous navigation but also their preferences on specific features of the apps under development. The elicited requirements were structured into four main categories, namely, requirements concerning the capabilities, functionality and usability of the apps, as well as compatibility requirements with respect to other apps and services. The main categories were then further divided into nine sub-categories. This classification, along with its content, aims to become a useful tool for the researcher or the developer who is involved in the development of digital services for BVI.

Keywords: accessibility, assistive mobile apps, blind and visually impaired people, user requirements analysis

Procedia PDF Downloads 48
1970 IoT Based Approach to Healthcare System for a Quadriplegic Patient Using EEG

Authors: R. Gautam, P. Sastha Kanagasabai, G. N. Rathna

Abstract:

The proposed healthcare system enables quadriplegic patients, people with severe motor disabilities to send commands to electronic devices and monitor their vitals. The growth of Brain-Computer-Interface (BCI) has led to rapid development in 'assistive systems' for the disabled called 'assistive domotics'. Brain-Computer-Interface is capable of reading the brainwaves of an individual and analyse it to obtain some meaningful data. This processed data can be used to assist people having speech disorders and sometimes people with limited locomotion to communicate. In this Project, Emotiv EPOC Headset is used to obtain the electroencephalogram (EEG). The obtained data is processed to communicate pre-defined commands over the internet to the desired mobile phone user. Other Vital Information like the heartbeat, blood pressure, ECG and body temperature are monitored and uploaded to the server. Data analytics enables physicians to scan databases for a specific illness. The Data is processed in Intel Edison, system on chip (SoC). Patient metrics are displayed via Intel IoT Analytics cloud service.

Keywords: brain computer interface, Intel Edison, Emotiv EPOC, IoT analytics, electroencephalogram

Procedia PDF Downloads 130
1969 Assistive Technologies and the 'Myth' of Independent Living: A Sociological Understanding of Assistive Technologies for Locomotor Disabled in India

Authors: Pavani K. Sree, Ragahava Reddy Chandri

Abstract:

Independent living and living with dignity have been the hallmarks of the movement of the persons with disabilities across the globe against the oppression perpetuated by society in the form of social and physical structural barriers. Advancements in assistive technologies have been providing a new lease of life to persons with disabilities. However, access to these technologies is marred by the issues of affordability and availability. Poor from the developing countries find it difficult to make independent living or live with dignity because of lack of access and inability to afford the advance technologies. Class and gender appear to be key factors influencing the access to modern assistive technologies. The present paper attempts to understand the dynamics of class and gender in accessing advanced technologies in the Indian context. Based on an empirical study in which data were collected from persons with locomotor disabilities and service providers, the paper finds that the advance technologies are expensive and inaccessible to all persons with disabilities. The paper also finds that men with disabilities are prioritized by the members of the family for the use of advance technologies while women with disabilities are forced to live with not so advanced technologies. The paper finds that the state institutions working in the field of prosthetics and assistive technologies fail to deliver to the requirements of the poor. It was found that because of lack of facilities at the state institutions the cost of prosthetics, in the case of orthopedically challenged, is expensive and unaffordable for the poor. It was found that while rich male access the private services the poor women depend on the state institutions. It may be said that the social, cultural stereotypes extend not only to the state organizations but also to the use of prosthetics. Thus the notions of independent living and living with dignity in third world countries context are still elusive.

Keywords: accessibility, assistive technology, class, gender, state

Procedia PDF Downloads 232
1968 Embodied Empowerment: A Design Framework for Augmenting Human Agency in Assistive Technologies

Authors: Melina Kopke, Jelle Van Dijk

Abstract:

Persons with cognitive disabilities, such as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are often dependent on some form of professional support. Recent transformations in Dutch healthcare have spurred institutions to apply new, empowering methods and tools to enable their clients to cope (more) independently in daily life. Assistive Technologies (ATs) seem promising as empowering tools. While ATs can, functionally speaking, help people to perform certain activities without human assistance, we hold that, from a design-theoretical perspective, such technologies often fail to empower in a deeper sense. Most technologies serve either to prescribe or to monitor users’ actions, which in some sense objectifies them, rather than strengthening their agency. This paper proposes that theories of embodied interaction could help formulating a design vision in which interactive assistive devices augment, rather than replace, human agency and thereby add to a persons’ empowerment in daily life settings. It aims to close the gap between empowerment theory and the opportunities provided by assistive technologies, by showing how embodiment and empowerment theory can be applied in practice in the design of new, interactive assistive devices. Taking a Research-through-Design approach, we conducted a case study of designing to support independently living people with ASD with structuring daily activities. In three iterations we interlaced design action, active involvement and prototype evaluations with future end-users and healthcare professionals, and theoretical reflection. Our co-design sessions revealed the issue of handling daily activities being multidimensional. Not having the ability to self-manage one’s daily life has immense consequences on one’s self-image, and also has major effects on the relationship with professional caregivers. Over the course of the project relevant theoretical principles of both embodiment and empowerment theory together with user-insights, informed our design decisions. This resulted in a system of wireless light units that users can program as a reminder for tasks, but also to record and reflect on their actions. The iterative process helped to gradually refine and reframe our growing understanding of what it concretely means for a technology to empower a person in daily life. Drawing on the case study insights we propose a set of concrete design principles that together form what we call the embodied empowerment design framework. The framework includes four main principles: Enabling ‘reflection-in-action’; making information ‘publicly available’ in order to enable co-reflection and social coupling; enabling the implementation of shared reflections into an ‘endurable-external feedback loop’ embedded in the persons familiar ’lifeworld’; and nudging situated actions with self-created action-affordances. In essence, the framework aims for the self-development of a suitable routine, or ‘situated practice’, by building on a growing shared insight of what works for the person. The framework, we propose, may serve as a starting point for AT designers to create truly empowering interactive products. In a set of follow-up projects involving the participation of persons with ASD, Intellectual Disabilities, Dementia and Acquired Brain Injury, the framework will be applied, evaluated and further refined.

Keywords: assistive technology, design, embodiment, empowerment

Procedia PDF Downloads 204
1967 Resistive Switching Characteristics of Resistive Random Access Memory Devices after Furnace Annealing Processes

Authors: Chi-Yan Chu, Kai-Chi Chuang, Huang-Chung Cheng

Abstract:

In this study, the RRAM devices with the TiN/Ti/HfOx/TiN structure were fabricated, then the electrical characteristics of the devices without annealing and after 400 °C and 500 °C of the furnace annealing (FA) temperature processes were compared. The RRAM devices after the FA’s 400 °C showed the lower forming, set and reset voltages than the other devices without annealing. However, the RRAM devices after the FA’s 500 °C did not show any electrical characteristics because the TiN/Ti/HfOx/TiN device was oxidized, as shown in the XPS analysis. From these results, the RRAM devices after the FA’s 400 °C showed the best electrical characteristics.

Keywords: RRAM, furnace annealing (FA), forming, set and reset voltages, XPS

Procedia PDF Downloads 260
1966 Expert Review on Conceptual Design Model of Assistive Courseware for Low Vision (AC4LV) Learners

Authors: Nurulnadwan Aziz, Ariffin Abdul Mutalib, Siti Mahfuzah Sarif

Abstract:

This paper reports an ongoing project regarding the development of Conceptual Design Model of Assistive Courseware for Low Vision (AC4LV) learners. Having developed the intended model, it has to be validated prior to producing it as guidance for the developers to develop an AC4LV. This study requires two phases of validation process which are through expert review and prototyping method. This paper presents a part of the validation process which is findings from experts review on Conceptual Design Model of AC4LV which has been carried out through a questionnaire. Results from 12 international and local experts from various respectable fields in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) were discussed and justified. In a nutshell, reviewed Conceptual Design Model of AC4LV was formed. Future works of this study are to validate the reviewed model through prototyping method prior to testing it to the targeted users.

Keywords: assistive courseware, conceptual design model, expert review, low vision learners

Procedia PDF Downloads 456
1965 Impact of FACTS Devices on Power Networks Reliability

Authors: Alireza Alesaadi

Abstract:

Flexible AC transmission system (FACTS) devices have an important rule on expnded electrical transmission networks. In this paper, the effect of these diveces on reliability of electrical networks is studied and it is shown that using of FACTS devices can improve the relibiability of power networks, significantly.

Keywords: FACTS devices, power networks, reliability

Procedia PDF Downloads 297
1964 An Assistive Robotic Arm for Defence and Rescue Application

Authors: J. Harrison Kurunathan, R. Jayaparvathy

Abstract:

"Assistive Robotics" is the field that deals with the study of robots that helps in human motion and also empowers human abilities by interfacing the robotic systems to be manipulated by human motion. The proposed model is a robotic arm that works as a haptic interface on the basis on accelerometers and DC motors that will function with respect to the movement of the human muscle. The proposed model would effectively work as a haptic interface that would reduce human effort in the field of defense and rescue. This can be used in very critical conditions like fire accidents to avoid causalities.

Keywords: accelerometers, haptic interface, servo motors, signal processing

Procedia PDF Downloads 318
1963 Reconfigurable Ubiquitous Computing Infrastructure for Load Balancing

Authors: Khaled Sellami, Lynda Sellami, Pierre F. Tiako

Abstract:

Ubiquitous computing helps make data and services available to users anytime and anywhere. This makes the cooperation of devices a crucial need. In return, such cooperation causes an overload of the devices and/or networks, resulting in network malfunction and suspension of its activities. Our goal in this paper is to propose an approach of devices reconfiguration in order to help to reduce the energy consumption in ubiquitous environments. The idea is that when high-energy consumption is detected, we proceed to a change in component distribution on the devices to reduce and/or balance the energy consumption. We also investigate the possibility to detect high-energy consumption of devices/network based on devices abilities. As a result, our idea realizes a reconfiguration of devices aimed at reducing the consumption of energy and/or load balancing in ubiquitous environments.

Keywords: ubiquitous computing, load balancing, device energy consumption, reconfiguration

Procedia PDF Downloads 178
1962 Social Assistive Robots, Reframing the Human Robotics Interaction Benchmark of Social Success

Authors: Antonio Espingardeiro

Abstract:

It is likely that robots will cross the boundaries of industry into households over the next decades. With demographic challenges worldwide, the future ageing populations will require the introduction of assistive technologies capable of providing, care, human dignity and quality of life through the aging process. Robotics technology has a high potential for being used in the areas of social and healthcare by promoting a wide range of activities such as entertainment, companionship, supervision or cognitive and physical assistance. However, such close Human Robotics Interactions (HRIs) encompass a rich set of ethical scenarios that need to be addressed before Socially Assistive Robots (SARs) reach the global markets. Such interactions with robots may seem a worthy goal for many technical/financial reasons but inevitably require close attention to the ethical dimensions of such interactions. This article investigates the current HRI benchmark of social success. It revises it according to the ethical principles of beneficence, non-maleficence and justice aligned with social care ethos. An extension of such benchmark is proposed based on an empirical study of HRIs with elderly groups.

Keywords: HRI, SARs, social success, benchmark, elderly care

Procedia PDF Downloads 428
1961 Improve of Power Quality in Electrical Network Using STATCOM

Authors: A. R. Alesaadi

Abstract:

Flexible AC transmission system (FACTS) devices have an important rule on expended electrical transmission networks. These devices can provide control of one or more AC transmission system parameters to enhance controllability and increase power transfer capability. In this paper the effect of these devices on reliability of electrical networks is studied and it is shown that using of FACTS devices can improve the reliability of power networks and power quality in electrical networks, significantly.

Keywords: FACTS devices, power networks, power quality, STATCOM

Procedia PDF Downloads 575
1960 Usage and Benefits of Handheld Devices as Educational Tools in Higher Institutions of Learning in Lagos State, Nigeria

Authors: Abiola A. Sokoya

Abstract:

Handheld devices are now in use as educational tools for learning in most of the higher institutions, because of the features and functions which can be used in an academic environment. This study examined the usage and the benefits of handheld devices as learning tools. A structured questionnaire was used to collect data, while the data collected was analyzed using simple percentage. It was, however, observed that handheld devices offer numerous functions and application for learning, which could improve academic performance of students. Students are now highly interested in using handheld devices for mobile learning apart from making and receiving calls. The researchers recommended that seminars be organized for students on functions of some common handheld devices that can aid learning for academic purposes. It is also recommended that management of each higher institution should make appropriate policies in-line with the usage of handheld technologies to enhance mobile learning. Government should ensure that appropriate policies and regulations are put in place for the importation of high quality handheld devices into the country, Nigeria being a market place for the technologies. By this, using handheld devices for mobile learning will be enhanced.

Keywords: handheld devices, educational tools, mobile e- learning, usage, benefits

Procedia PDF Downloads 157