Project Vest: receiving acoustic information a person with a hearing impairment by vibration






Currently, the technology went so far forward that allow return rumor even people whose hearing aid / auditory nerves are damaged. Not so long ago, have set up special prostheses that deliver electrical signals in the human brain, bypassing the damaged auditory nerves.

However, the installation of such a prosthesis requires invasive neurosurgery. In addition, the cost of invasive auditory prosthesis + operation is about 40 thousand US dollars. It is clear that not every person with hearing problems can not afford such.

Nevertheless, recently was announced interesting project that allows literally perceive the sounds of the entire body (more precisely, the torso).

The system proposed by neuroscientist Dr. David Iglmenom David Eagleman and his graduate student Scott Novichev (Scott Novich) is a vest with tactile feedback modules, equipped with miniature vibration is.

The system is connected to the microphone. Sound converted microphone (now scientists are using a smartphone) into electrical signals, which are received through special microcontrollers on vibrating vest modules and starts work The vibration. Depending on the strength of the sound frequency tone, vibration modules operate differently.

Of course, wearing a vest, a person does not understand what and why he hears, it will just be a chaotic vibration. But scientists have developed and a two-week training course, after which the human brain begins to perceive these vibrations already "meaningful." This person begins immediately "hear" the body.




The system and the idea of ​​the project may seem a little strange, but scientists claim that such a system is very real, because the human brain does not "hear" in the truest sense of the word. The brain receives from hearing the electrical signal of a certain type, analyzes them them, and after that we begin to hear a particular sound. Vibration Felt body also provokes the appearance of an electrical signal which enters the brain. And after some training the brain starts to perceive these signals as sound. Of course, there are some differences, but experiments have shown that a person, after a workout, really begins to hear the whole body.

Now scientists have launched a project on Kickstarter, with the aim to raise money for a better system prototype Vest (Vibrotactile Extra-Sensory Transducer).

By the way, they are already thinking about how to help with this project and help people with normal hearing to begin to perceive more information through signals perceived by the body. For example, it may be stock information or news broadcast by any other way in order from the network to the system type Vest. While this is only a hypothesis, but scientists will try to create a working prototype of the system of training of perception of such information.



Sounds certainly unusual, but the world has previously conducted studies that prove the ability to replace the missing senses other signals. Also, there are people who perceive information counter not like everyone else. Some math geeks (people-counters) during complex calculations can smell, taste, music and a variety of colors, the combination of which produces the desired result. Human brain - complex tools to learn it is still many decades, during which he will produce more and more secrets about their work.




A Vest - one of the projects that help to use some of the features of the brain and nervous system in favor of the latter. The project has a video on the same Kickstarter, here it does not insert code habraparser cuts, so that you can see on the этой link .

Source: habrahabr.ru/company/medgadgets/blog/236605/

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