Using Semi-Autonomous Car Technology to Assist Visually Impaired

I’ve committed myself to writing and talking around the concepts of Micro-Interactions and Anticipatory computing and using a SmartWatches app as a vehicle to deliver the content such that it has particular relevance. The challenge is actually coming up with a compelling use-case (apart from the obvious), initially it was a Water Consumption Monitor, then a Pace Setter (i.e. allow the user to set a pace and nudge them when the user is slowing down), but then settled for a way for the user to navigate to a destination with less reliance on their SmartPhone (more on this on a later post).

This idea sparked a thought of how Smart devices (Phone/Watch/Earpiece/…) could help navigate the visually impaired around urban areas using similar techniques used by semi-autonomous cars.

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Practitioners Look At SmartWatches

Not a week goes by without seeing an article about a new SmartWatch or some discussion about the future of wearable computing (rings, clothes, IOT, …). Having being always inspired gadgets like Dick Tracy’s watch I have always kept a fairly close eye on this space and recently decided to jump in and build something to better learn about the opportunities and constraints of building for a SmartWatch (or wearable tech in general). In this short article I’ll describe my learnings and present my opinion of some practical uses for a SmartWatch.

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