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Mobile Lorm Glove: introducing a communication device for deaf-blind people

Ulrike Gollner; Tom Bieling; Gesche Joost
In: Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Tangible, Embedded and Embodied Interaction. International Conference on Tangible, Embedded and Embodied Interaction (TEI), ISBN 978-1-4503-1174-8, Association for Computing Machinery, 2012.


Marginalized communities like deaf-blind people are excluded from several forms of communication. This paper introduces a novel system of interaction to support deaf-blind people’s communication and therefore enhance their independence. We introduce the Mobile Lorm Glove: a mobile communication and translation device for the deaf-blind. The glove translates the hand-touch alphabet Lorm, a common form of communication used by people with both hearing and sight impairment, into text and vice versa. We will present a hardware prototype, created in a participatory design process, which enables the deaf-blind user to compose messages via fabric pressure sensors placed on the palm of the glove to be transmitted as an SMS to the receiver’s handheld. Initiated by small vibrating motors located on the back of the glove, tactile feedback patterns allow the wearer to perceive incoming messages. We discuss related work, prototype design and interaction design and application scenarios. We conclude with an outlook into further research.