Portable auditif system of reading for blind person

Project: Research

Project Details


The blind or visually impaired people represent 17.5 million people in Europe and about 75.000 in Wallonia. For most of these people, much information, which exists in written or imaged forms, such as banknotes and coins, schedule of train, labels in the stores, books, postal letters, invoices, instruction manual, is not easily accessible for them.

Actually, the only existing technical solution is to couple a home-scanner with a computer and an optical character recognition software, associated with speech synthesis.These systems are cumbersome and not handy.
Moreover, for readings not on papers, such as schedule of train or labels in stores, it is not possible to put them in a table and therefore to use those existing devices.

The main aim of Sypole project is to remedy all these needs by the realization of a prototype device, which will be portable, autonomous, small-size and easy to use for blind or visually impaired people.
This kind of device will be able to recognize text and coloured forms, such as logos, and to auto-generate a speech signal.

Based on recent scientific breakthroughs about character recognition, speech synthesis and on the recent evolutions of technologies integrating digital cameras and powerful data processing in personal digital assistant, Sypole allows to link all these techniques together to improve the daily life of partially sighted or blind people and to give them a better social integration. Technically speaking, this project aims at being developed in embedded Linux for economic and computing efficiency reasons.

Five researchers work on this three-year project, subsidied by Région Wallonne.The TCTS laboratory is the prime leader of the project.
Effective start/end date1/06/0331/05/06


  • visual handicap
  • character recognition
  • embedded systems