Skip to Main Content

University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

#FromMarginToCenter: Inclusive Design: Vision

Mimica Touch is designed to let people who have visual impairment to know when food expires and limit everyone's food waste by providing more accurate predictions. The gel is kept in a small bag on the packaging and changes at the same rate as the quality of different foods, such as meat, milk or cheese.



Feel The View takes pictures that are turned into high-contrast monochrome images. By touching the image, different shades of grey vibrate with a range of 255 intensities, allowing passengers to touch the scene and rebuild in their mind the landscape in front of them.



OrCam MyEye 2.0 is a revolutionary voice activated device that attaches to virtually any glasses. It can instantly read to you text from a book, smartphone screen or any other surface, recognize faces, help you shop on your own, work more efficiently, and live a more independent life.



Dot aims to make the visually impaired get the necessary information more easily conveniently, and quickly. Dot will contribute to a more disability-friendly world with easily accessible facilities for everyone.

- Dot Watch is a smart watch. It does what every other smart watch does, except that it displays everything in Braille. Any time a notification comes in, the user will not have to whip out their phone to know what it is about – they will simply be able to read them on their watch. 

- Dot Translate sets itself apart as the first braille translator based on artificial intelligence and it boasts the ability to translate any digital text to braille with incredible accuracy. The AI-based braille translator is able to boast such near-human accuracy because it is being trained with millions of human translation samples.

- Dot Pad can access any lengthy information, such as email and e-books, formula calculations, graphical representations, and data entry. 

- Dot Mini is the first smart media device for the visually impaired. It combines innovative technology, software and design, for experiencing content like never before. Access books, magazines, audio, and even movies.



LEGO Braille Bricks is a playful tool to teach Braille to blind and visually impaired children. Children naturally learn through play. It allows them to discover the world around them, come up with ideas of their own, connect with others, and use their natural creativity and curiosity.



The DotBook is designed to enable easy access to digital content through e-reading and e-writing for people with visual impairment. This is a cost-effective, ergonomic design with an aim to eliminate the dependence on laptops and writing assistants.



Emotional Speakers are subtle tools that use body language and emotions to alert people with visual impairments that they might otherwise ignore. It comes with a pair of camera glasses that sends images of conversation partners to an emotion recognition app. These are analyzed and translated into a sensory signal: emotions like attention, surprise or happiness are felt by a specific vibration of the small device in the palm of your hand. You can actually feel someone smiling.



NaviLens helps make cities smarter and more inclusive. The capabilities of this code allow users to interact more easily and accessible with their environment in places such as subway stations, bus stops and museums or public buildings.



Alexa Show and Tell is a new feature from Amazon. With it, blind and low-vision users can use Alexa to identify objects in their hands., announcing a new feature called Alexa Show and Tell. With Show and Tell, blind and low vision customers can hold up an item to the Echo Show camera and ask, “Alexa, what am I holding,” and Alexa helps identify the item through advanced computer vision and machine learning technologies for object recognition.



Vision 20/20 is a set of packets, which are black and yellow, feature large Helvetica font and use shapes, such as circles and triangles, to indicate different foods. The shapes are easier to spot on the shelf or in a dark cupboard, says Mr Thomas, and could be used as "giant QR codes", so they would be scanned into an app that would read out information. It is created by design studio Jones Knowles Ritchie and Revolt Communications.


Lyft and Aptiv have partnered with the National Federation of the Blind to run trails which will focus on low vision and blind riders. To create a more dynamic, interactive and informative self-driving experience for riders, we worked alongside San Francisco's Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired's Media and Accessible Design Lab to create Braille guides for self-driving riders. These materials include a Braille map of the self-driving route riders will travel on, as well as a diagram of Aptiv’s self-driving vehicle. 



The "Guide Suitcase" invented by Chieko Asakawa, enables blind users to navigate public spaces and avoid objects in their path. Packed with cameras and sensors -- many of the same technologies found in an autonomous car -- the suitcase uses artificial intelligence (AI) to map the environment around it, calculating distances between the user and objects both stationary and mobile. 



Lookout is an app to help blind and visually impaired people learn about their surroundings. Lookout delivers spoken notifications, designed to be used with minimal interaction allowing people to stay engaged with their activity.


Procter & Gamble hair care brand Herbal Essences recently launched a new bottle design to help visually impaired consumers. Designed by Sumaira Latif, P&G's Special consultant for Inclusive Design, the new bottle features tactile markers to help blind people identify shampoo and conditioner (with stripes on shampoo and circles on conditioner). The design also helps people who wear glasses or contact lenses, which are often removed in the shower and blur their vision. So far, packaging has relied on vision, and we need to consider how we can incorporate other senses to enhance the user experience.



The Sunu Band is a smart band that protects your head and upper body by warning you through vibrations when an object or person is too close. You wear it like a watch and it will feel like walking with an invisible sighted guide, helping you get anywhere you want to go and keeping you safe at all times.