A Mobile Navigation System Based on Visual Cues for Pedestrians with Cognitive Disabilities

A Mobile Navigation System Based on Visual Cues for Pedestrians with Cognitive Disabilities

Javier Gómez (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain) and Timo Ojala (University of Oulu, Finland)
Copyright: © 2015 |Pages: 18
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-7373-1.ch009
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Abstract

The authors present a prototype of a mobile navigation system designed for pedestrians with cognitive disabilities. The system first determines the shortest route from current location to a desired predefined destination from a set of candidate routes obtained from Bing Maps and Google Maps. Then the system extracts intermediate targets (decision points) from the route according to street crossings. The guidance to the next intermediate target is provided in the form of atomic textual and auditory instructions, together with visual cues extracted automatically from Google Street View. The experimental evaluation of the application is carried out via a field study with two subjects with Down syndrome in authentic urban setting. The chapter concludes with a reflection on the design of the system and the findings of the field study.
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The ISO has defined Assistive Technologies (AT) as “any device, equipment, instrument or software produced to prevent, compensate, monitor, calm or neutralize disabilities in the body structures or their functionalities, restrictions in activities or social participation” (International Standards Organization, 2011). Similarly, the 1998 U.S. Assistive Technology Act (ATA, 1998) defined the AT as “product, device, or equipment, whether acquired commercially, modified or customized, that is used to maintain, increase, or improve the functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities”.

Braddock, Rizzolo, Thompson and Bell (2004) discussed how ATs have been designed for people with various disabilities, such as robotic prosthesis for motor control (Hochberg et al., 2012) or augmented and alternative communication devices (Ganz et al., 2012). A number of systems for assisting people with cognitive disabilities in their daily lives have been proposed in the past, for example GUIDE (O’Neill & Gillespie, 2008), COACH (Mihailidis, Fernie & Cleghorn, 2000), Archipel (Bauchet, 2009), ePAD (Mihailidis et al., 2010) and 2D-Tasks (Caballero-Hernández et al., 2012).

However, systems for assisting people with cognitive disabilities in mobile navigation are less common.

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