Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Technique enhances digital television viewing for visually-impaired

17.01.2008
Scientists at Schepens Eye Research Institute have found that people with low vision can improve their ability to see and enjoy television with a new technique that allows them to enhance the contrast of images of people and objects of interest on their digital televisions.

A study in the edition of the Journal of the Optical Society of America published online in November 2007 and issued in print in January 2008, demonstrates that patients with macular degeneration prefer watching TV with this contrast enhancement and that the level of enhancement they choose depends on how much vision they have lost with their disease.

Nearly four million Americans suffer from vision loss from diseases--such as macular degeneration--that impede their central vision and their ability to comfortably view the images on any television, cutting them off from a significant source of information and entertainment enjoyed by the mainstream. Often such patients cannot see faces of characters or other details that make a broadcast understandable. Some solutions have been special telescopic glasses, which can help patients see details but often cut off parts of the image, lessening context, and large television screens, which can be quite costly.

The new method--developed by Dr. Eli Peli, the Institute’s low vision expert, the Moakley Scholar in Aging Eye Research, and a professor of ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School, is the latest of several image-enhancing innovations his research team has created to improve TV watching for the visually impaired. It is also the first developed for digital television images. “We knew it was time to address the changing technology,” says Peli, who pointed out that digital television will replace traditional television technology over the next few years due to government mandate.

Working within the “decoder” that makes digital television images possible, Peli and his colleagues were able to make a simple change that could give every digital TV the contrast enhancing potential for the benefit of the visually impaired. “The same modification could easily be made to new HDTVs, and digital cable set top boxes,” says Matthew Fullerton, the paper’s first author, and a student of electronic engineering from the University of York in England who is currently working on his Master’s degree in Peli’s lab.

To test their new technology, the team presented eight digital videos to 24 subjects with vision impairment and six with normal vision. Each patient was given a remote control, which allowed him/her to increase or decrease the contrast of the image. Patients manipulated over-enhanced and blurry images for the greatest clarity.

The research team learned that even subjects with normal sight selected some enhancement and that the amount of enhancement selected by those with visual problems varied depending upon the level of contrast sensitivity loss they experienced due to their disease. All this demonstrated to the team that the device was both usable and useful to the subjects, even those without vision problems.

Peli is now working with Analog Devices Inc. to create a prototype chip that could be included in all future generations of digital television. “The technology we created is quite simple and can easily and cheaply be incorporated into even the newest technologies for television and internet video.”

Peli adds that he believes that as the population ages, this technology will be used by more and more of those whose eyes are going through a normal change as they get older as well as those more severely impaired.

Patti Jacobs | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.schepens.harvard.edu/
http://www.eri.harvard.edu/faculty/peli/lab/videos/mpeg/

More articles from Communications Media:

nachricht On patrol in social networks
25.01.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation IAO

nachricht Tile Based DASH Streaming for Virtual Reality with HEVC from Fraunhofer HHI
03.01.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Nachrichtentechnik Heinrich-Hertz-Institut

All articles from Communications Media >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Biocompatible 3-D tracking system has potential to improve robot-assisted surgery

17.02.2017 | Medical Engineering

Real-time MRI analysis powered by supercomputers

17.02.2017 | Medical Engineering

Antibiotic effective against drug-resistant bacteria in pediatric skin infections

17.02.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>