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ThinkMind // International Journal On Advances in Life Sciences, volume 8, numbers 3 and 4, 2016 // View article lifsci_v8_n34_2016_1


A Virtual Presence System Design with Indoor Navigation Capabilities for Patients with Locked-In Syndrome

Authors:
Jens Garstka
Simone Eidam
Gabriele Peters

Keywords: biomedical communication; human computer interaction; eye tracking; indoor navigation; virtual presence

Abstract:
In this article, we present a prototype of a virtual presence system combined with an eye-tracking based communication interface and an indoor navigation component to support patients with locked-in syndrome. The common locked-in syndrome is a state of paralysis of all four limbs while a patient retains full consciousness. Furthermore, also the vocal tract and the respiration system are paralyzed. Thus, the virtually only possibility to communicate consists in the utilization of eye movements for system control. Our prototype allows the patient to control movements of the virtual presence system by eye gestures while observing a live view of the scene that is displayed on a screen via an on-board camera. The system comprises an object classification module to provide the patient with different interaction and communication options depending on the object he or she has chosen via an eye gesture. In addition, our system has an indoor navigation component, which can be used to prevent the patient from navigating the virtual presence systems to critical areas and to allow for an autonomous return to the base station using the shortest path. The proposed prototype may open up new possibilities for locked-in syndrome patients to regain a little more mobility and interaction capabilities within their familiar environment.

Pages: 175 to 183

Copyright: Copyright (c) to authors, 2016. Used with permission.

Publication date: December 31, 2016

Published in: journal

ISSN: 1942-2660

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