Ford reveals video of 'Feel the View' technology for blind people

Ford's new smart window lets blind passengers “see” passing scenery using vibrations, touch and AI

But for the visually impaired, the passing scenery has remained a mystery.

Ford has created innovative new technology for the visually impaired designed to help them enjoy the view out of a auto window.

Marco Alu Saffi, from Ford Italy, said: "We seek to make people's lives better and this was a fantastic opportunity to help blind passengers experience a great aspect of driving".

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And it will pose a test for them because they have largely come to rely on asking their users to login with Facebook credentials. From there, their dating profile will be shared with other people going to the event who are also using the dating service .

To help the visually impaired to be able to enjoy the views outside the vehicle, Ford has cooked up something it describes as a prototype smart auto window.

Called Feel The View, the technology uses a camera and vibration motor mounted on to the window, which captures pictures and then turns them into greyscale images before reproducing them on to the glass. Each of the varying shades of grey in the image is then represented by a vibration, with 255 intensities in total. The idea is to allow the passenger to touch the screen and imagine in their mind the landscape or other items in front of them.

An artificial intelligence-powered vocal assistant connected to the vehicle's speakers also gives a brief description of landscape features as passengers run their fingers over them.

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One survivor, 26-year-old Henrique, said he managed to get out from the third floor with his girlfriend and their dog. Seven other buildings were evacuated in the surrounding area. "We struggle so much and now we've lost everything".

Ford has not indicated whether or not the tactile "viewing" device will make it into series production, however it does appear to be at a reasonably polished stage of development.

Feel The View was conceived and developed by Ford's team in Italy and GTB Roma, in collaboration with Aedo - a local start-up that specializes in devices for the visually impaired.

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