About this Journal Submit a Manuscript Table of Contents
International Journal of Telemedicine and Applications
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 894869, 12 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/894869
Research Article

PERCEPT Indoor Navigation System for the Blind and Visually Impaired: Architecture and Experimentation

1Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA 01003, USA
2Department of Public Health, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA 01003, USA
3Massachusetts Commission for the Blind, Executive Office of Health and Human Services, Boston, MA 02111, USA

Received 24 May 2012; Revised 31 October 2012; Accepted 4 November 2012

Academic Editor: Y. L. Hsu

Copyright © 2012 Aura Ganz et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

We introduce PERCEPT system, an indoor navigation system for the blind and visually impaired. PERCEPT will improve the quality of life and health of the visually impaired community by enabling independent living. Using PERCEPT, blind users will have independent access to public health facilities such as clinics, hospitals, and wellness centers. Access to healthcare facilities is crucial for this population due to the multiple health conditions that they face such as diabetes and its complications. PERCEPT system trials with 24 blind and visually impaired users in a multistory building show PERCEPT system effectiveness in providing appropriate navigation instructions to these users. The uniqueness of our system is that it is affordable and that its design follows orientation and mobility principles. We hope that PERCEPT will become a standard deployed in all indoor public spaces, especially in healthcare and wellness facilities.