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Science Technology

Computer Program Allows the Blind To "See" With Sound 56

sciencehabit writes "Scientists have developed an algorithm that converts simple grayscale images into musical soundscapes. Even people blind from birth can use the technology to 'see' their surroundings and navigate around a room. Equally intriguing, the part of the subject's brain responsible for vision was active during these tasks, suggesting our thinking about how the brain works may be wrong. Instead of a 'vision center' of the brain, for example, we may actually have a region that helps us 'see', whether that input comes from sight or sound."
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Computer Program Allows the Blind To "See" With Sound

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  • by ShanghaiBill ( 739463 ) on Thursday March 06, 2014 @09:26PM (#46424951)

    I am not sure if "grayscale" is the most useful information to a blind person. A few years ago I tried on some ultra-sound goggles designed for the blind. The cool thing about it was that, with practice, by listening to the pulses, I could not only tell how close an object was, but also how rigid or dense it was. A pillow would sound very different from a rock. Just by listening, I could "look" at two soda cans on the shelf, and tell which one was empty. Of course, it gave no information about color.

  • by jawnah ( 1022209 ) on Thursday March 06, 2014 @09:43PM (#46425069)
    I'm glad to see a post that positively promotes development in science. For some reason, our "science" has stagnated lately in my opinion with "scientists" taking hard-line approaches to situations - they are no longer thinking out of the box and force everyone to think in the box or be ostracized and labeled "stupid". I agree that there is more likely a part of the brain that helps us "see". I believe that the data used by that brain center can be different to produce different results: 1) You see with your eyes the events happening in front of you. 2) You see with your mind when you recall a sequence of events, situation, or even dream.

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