Woman invents ‘assistant glasses’ for visually impaired

Woman invents ‘assistant glasses’ for visually impaired

Beyazıt Şenbük – ISTANBUL
Woman invents ‘assistant glasses’ for visually impaired

A 25-year-old Turkish woman has invented special glasses, named “assistant glasses,” that help visually impaired people to “recognize” people or “identify” objects.

Graduated from the U.S. Brown College, Melis Gökalp, who is working in an international digital health systems company, had written the software of the assistant glasses between 2019 and 2021.

According to Gökalp, the glasses work with a camera on top of them and a headset, which are both connected to a computer system.

The glasses tell the name of an approaching person or the location of an object to the blind via headphones.

“With the help of the sensors, the glasses identify and annouces the objects surrounding the visually impaired person,” Gökalp said.

“On the contrary, the user can ask the glasses to find the location of an object. For example, the user may say, ‘Where are my keys?’ Then the glasses will monitor the surrounding area, detect the location of the keys, and communicate with the user.”

Gökalp also highlighted that the system may tell the colors of all objects the user may ask about.

The company she is working for has produced six prototypes of the glasses and they are all in clinical trials at the Rhode Island Veterans Hospital in the U.S.

Behind all her successes, there lies another success story of another Turkish citizen, the software developer has admitted.

“It was 2008 and I was 11 years old. I read a newspaper article about Can Yeğinsu, who graduated from the law faculty of Harvard University. He made a speech to some 8,000 attendees of the graduation ceremony.”

“After finishing the article, I started dreaming of a successful career ahead. I thought ‘I need to work hard to climb the ladder.’ Then I studied hard and two years later, I ranked first at the high school entrance exam across the country.”