Eye tracking for communication or function, sometimes called “Gaze Interaction” , is a still emerging field of technology that allows people with limited physical capacity or delayed cognitive development to communicate and interact with the world around them. By using an specialized computer display and integrated, high quality video system, individuals can select words or objects from a pre-defined list by doing nothing more than looking at it.
Most systems for Gaze Interaction revolve around a rugged, specialized medical-grade tablet PCs, such as Estone Tech’s MT-line tablets . These medical-grade tablets are designed to mount to wheelchairs or medical carts in fixed positions before the chair or cart’s operator. Specialized, adaptable software developed by experts in communication, accessibility, medicine, and psychology provides a series of prompts for things like requests, statements, and, and questions, as well as the ability to assemble any speech from a library, to the user on discrete portions of the tablet’s screen. The software then uses an integrated, or external, high quality camera to detect the fine movements of the user’s eyes and selects the word or request they’re looking at. Once a sentence or complete thought is assembled, it is spoken aloud by the medical-grade tablet’s speakers.
Early systems were extremely cumbersome, and often took users many minutes to assemble simple statements and requests, but more powerful medical-grade tablets, more advanced communication software, and ongoing studies in eye-movements and human perception have led to increasingly nimble software. Today, some Gaze Interaction systems require that the user focus on a particular word or symbol for as little as 1/6th of a second to select it, and learning software constantly updates itself to provide the most likely requests at any given time first, and select symbology that eases and speeds use.
Today, Gaze Interaction technology in conjunction with medical-grade tablet PCs helpd individuals with a wide range of disabilities or impairments, from paralysis and ALS or other locked in syndromes, to those with Autism or conditions that reduce their ability to vocalize.
Contact Estone Tech today to learn more about our tablet technology developed for the medical field, including specialized tablets for Gaze Interaction or other communication methods for the impaired.