VIS / Vision Assistance Race



About the Team

The A-eye team is formed within Sorbonne University that aims to highlight the work and expertise of our students and cutting-edge research conducted within the university in a common federating project. The development of our solution is based on the work currently carried out by a dozen groups of students who all focus on specific challenges of the event.

The originality of our solution is to rely on the work done within the ISIR lab (Institut des systèmes intelligents et de robotique) on sensory substitution/augmentation via kinesthetic feedback.

About the Pilot

Sébastien Hinderer is a Senior Software Engineer working on the OCaml compiler. He was born blind and got a PhD in natural language processing. He has a strong commitment to improving accessibility in various ways: he is involved in several non-profit organisations, contributes to several open-source projects, and is keen on testing new and innovative solutions that enhance visually impaired peoples' possibilities.

Sébastien is at the heart of the team and participates in a co-design approach to describing the functions to be performed by the device. In the second phase, he will participate in the technological choices considered in order to refine the performance of the system.

About the Device

Our device takes the form of a harness equipped with a kinesthetic feedback device. The system is divided into two parts:

- the measurement of the pilot's environment (analysis of the environment, detection of obstacles ...) is provided by cameras capable of measuring the distance of objects (as the Kinect did on the Xbox game console).

- a kinesthetic feedback device which is in fact a robot that moves a handle held by the pilot. This handle can move forward/backward and sideways. The goal is to guide the pilot through the analysis of the environment based on the measurements of the cameras. By moving the hand, we mimic the interaction that a visually impaired or blind person has with a guide.

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