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This device right here is trying to help make reading a little bit easier for those with impaired vision.
Well maybe language related learning disabilities joining us now from Washington DC -- Latest review -- in this week's all things digital is Walt Mossberg personal tech columnist at.
The Wall Street Journal Walt good to see a game got to get out of that hearing a little bit worldly youthful hot hot down there your way.
It can mimic and read transcripts.
Yeah I think within the -- -- -- -- can play back to me in the sweet voice.
Tell -- for the -- is not an e-book reader tell us what this does and what you think about.
Well I you know Brian Intel has.
Intel doesn't make computers and that one -- the -- things is this is the first it is the computer of the sort.
And it's the first computer I've ever seen that's got Intel's brand as the brand on it but.
This is out of a health group there and what this is is.
A new product to help people who are blind who have like macular degeneration or some.
Disease that limits their vision or people with some kinds of learning disabilities.
That make reading hard to help them.
With a digital technology product to read printed material.
Restaurant menus that sort of thing.
And so as you can see there.
It has a forward facing screen it's reasonably big -- point three inches.
And very sharp and it has eight.
Five megapixel camera on the bottom edge and you hold it in front -- -- You press this very large easy to find button -- remember when you're talking about this yeah population things can be I'm showing it.
By the way to our viewers right now OK got the buttons and everything in you know.
Fact I actually kicked it on and you can hear the the voice.
All right so it takes it so it takes a picture.
There they're reading Alice's adventures in wonderland softer gonna give they got -- -- sounds.
And you can change that to a male voice by the way you can adjust the pitch and the speed.
Turns out that although I didn't know this that a lot of -- visually impaired people.
Prefer to listen at a speed it would be much faster then.
The rest of population -- -- -- choose.
Anyway so the idea is how good is that how good is that it.
Capturing this tax and converting it into audio what you're doing or into the letters on the screen which can be very large and so I tested it on everything from.
Harry Potter books to Cheerios boxes.
And I'm I had mixed results it was better on books was better on like long magazine article pages.
It was not very good it -- fact it was useless -- bank statements and cereal boxes.
But those -- and its its main purposes newspapers -- kind of a middle case the problem -- being.
It tends to it's hard to focus -- -- just one article it'll pick up fragments of the articles and how.
I mean there's various levels of sight impairment -- how would.
How good -- it -- I mean if you're if you're truly vision impaired obviously it's going to be very difficult -- someone does it for you to follow the text of the you have to be that exact when you take a picture of say a menu you need to be exactly obligated to Riverside impaired at that can be difficult as well as -- what you get -- generally you.
That's right you do need to get the whole thing in the in the image -- -- have some vision likened it in the middle of your eyes you can do that if you're blind obviously.
Not going to be able to do that so Intel built in things to correct for the -- richer and orientation of the page to try to help.
You get as much of the page issue as you can.
With that and there are some tips of you know you can feel book.
You could hold it based on feel and we all know that -- Without one cents often are better at other senses but I found in -- view and and again Mike caveat is not having knees.
These impairments I'm not in a perfect position to judge but in my testing.
That was the biggest problem with it.
And it but it got better over the four by -- that uses so I think there is a learning curve but I think you get it down better and better if you go ahead.
-- like your pointed to your point again I mean if you are extremely vision impaired or have severe learning disabilities with regard division -- reading.
This is as this is something new and exciting it's not cheap but but it's definitely going to be something that enables you to pick up on taxed.
And listen to it portable.
Well I think that's right and and it's 15100 bucks.
We should point out quickly.
That there are some other devices in the market this is not the first device in the market but what makes this unusual is.
This runs on -- PC grade processor the other most popular one like this is a cell phone.
The based thing and it's obviously that makes it more portable.
But the processor and a cell phone is not going to be as good as this and Intel.
Says they're gonna stick with this business and keep.
Upping the power of this and keep refining the software so.
It's really the first thing I've seen that is a really sort of a real if low end computer.
It is configured for this purpose and yet that's why I decided to write about it -- I think it's exciting war.
Not just the blind population which is relatively small but there's a larger population of -- aging boomers that are getting these vision impairments and then of course I don't know the numbers but I'm sure there's a fairly large population of people with things like.
Dyslexia that this might help.
You know I -- to -- -- two things on -- the reader practice page and -- Alice's.
Very deep well Alice's adventures in wonderland and and all I can think about it be appropriate for this hearing we just put.
-- adventures in DC in just the well.
-- -- well I imagine that you know when they -- transcript of that hearing comes out you can sit there and take pictures evident.
You could it may be to put you to sleep at night you never know there you go wall moss for thank you very much of the review of the Intel reader Walt thanks so much.
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