Monday, 30th October 2017

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Talking books for blind students

Text to audio with special scanner

By Antara Bose in Jamshedpur
  • Published 11.05.18
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LISTEN TO LEARN: Librarian Salman Babar explains the Talking Books concept at Karim City College in Jamshedpur on Thursday. Picture by Bhola Prasad

Jamshedpur: Here's some good news for visually impaired students across the steel city who do not wish to compromise on their education.

Karim City College, an affiliated college of Kolhan University in Sakchi, has initiated a Talking Books concept to help visually impaired students ace academics.

The college has bought two computers and as many Lex Instant Reader and Scanners worth Rs 2 lakh from Uttarakhand-based outfit Sparsh a fortnight back.

Lex is a software designed specifically for the blind to help them read any printed or electronic document more quickly and easily.

Lex Instant Reader and Scanner is a highly portable camera system that gives its users an instant access to any physical document.

To use the technology, one has to place a document under the camera, press enter on the computer keyboard and after a few seconds the specialised software converts the document to an audio file, which is then read aloud to the user.

The college, which itself has two blind students, has decided to make the facility available for free to all visually impaired school and college students. The facility has been set up at the college library and will be open to public by month-end.

"Our special students will show others how to use the technology and motivate them to continue their education. We also plan to extend the facility to as many people as possible," said college librarian Salman Babar.

Currently the system can translate only English text to English audio.

"The college plans to initiate the service in Hindi as well" added Babar.