INK 2016: Indoor Navigation and Communication in ÖPNV for blind and visually impaired people

Blindness is just a restriction on information, not on mobility, and can be overcome as far as possible by implementation of relevant information systems. The greatest part of this infor-mation deficit can be bypassed through autonomous positioning and navigation of visually impaired people as well as the information regarding the position and route of the vehicles of public transport. This is especially true for the indoor case, where no GNSS is available.
The goal of the consortium is to realize such an application based on modules developed within preliminary projects for the mobile mass market, which operates independent of con-structional situations and available infrastructure and which is internationally deployable. Via a proper user interface that fits the needs of visually impaired people, a blind user shall be able to independently use public transport in a secure way and to orientate within complex public transport terminals.
Therefore, the system combines real-time communication to and from vehicles of public transport with accurate positioning and guidance. It also features additional navigational aid through video calls, where an acquaintance or professional operator can be contacted.
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This project was funded by the Austrian Promotion Agency (FFG) within the programme line "Mobilität der Zukunft".


Manfred Wieser
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