Honduran Electronics-Whizz Creates Homemade Eye-Tracking Computer Interface
Honduran teenager Luis Cruz has used his electronics and programming know-how to create a new homemade eyeball tracker. The device allows users with motor disabilities to enter text into their computer with eye movements as opposed to keystrokes. The device, known as the Eyeboard system, is not a new concept but Cruz has taken things a step further, he’s managed to create a pair of spectacles including his technology for an affordable price (less than £200). The hope is that this homemade eyetracker will mean easier communication will become affordable in developing countries and areas where those with such needs may have no means of communication currently.
A hands-free eye-tracking controlled computer can truly revolutionise the lives of people with specific motor disabilities. It can be the easiest and most effective aid to communication for these individuals and Cruz’ technology is further widening the access to communication aids. Up until this point, eyeball tracking computer interfaces have been too expensive for most, retailing at over £6,000. If Cruz’ can get this new development made as cheaply for others it is really going to help people who need eye-tracking equipment around the world.
Over the last twelve months Cruz has been refining and perfecting the Eyeboard system. His system uses some very specific scientific and electronics formulae to result in the basic eye-ball tracking computer interface. Cruz’ system is extremely basic, hence its cheap cost but it allows for letters to be input via eye movement rather than typed in which is a big achievement for a very affordable software system. Cruz developed both the hardware device and the software system needed to turn the eye movements into letters and therefore communication.
Open Source Eye Gaze Technology
The Eyeboard system is a very new development and not yet widely available. Despite this, Cruz is confident he can produce the hardware cheaply, with his prototype spectacles costing under £200. He’s also decided to release his software as open source to speed up development of tools to further speed up users’ communication. Cruz’ development is groundbreaking and is something that can hopefully be rolled out to significantly improve the communication and daily lives of people across the world.
This video further explains Cruz’ homemade eyetracker device and how beneficial it can be for the future of communication: