(Translated from “Rapporto OsservaSalute 2016” (p. 236), http://www.osservatoriosullasalute.it/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/ro-2016-arg-disabilita.pdf)
People with severe and multiple disabilities […] very often are in a condition to be dependent from others’ interventions and the passivity features their relationship with the environment. In other words, also when it lacks a support, the person are not able to control its environment and to perform conscious chooses even if he/she has a precise intention. Those situations, from an existential and psychological point of view, decrease in a consistent manner the self-determination levels, as consequence the support/educative interventions bring a confirmation of the need of dependency and risk to increase this feeling during the time.
This background could be worse without specific interventions with procedures and technologies (Assistive Technology). A common technology is the Speech-Generating Devices (SGDs), tools able to vocalize recorded messages with a low programming task. SGDs are also called Voice-Output Communication Aids. […]
In the field of these technologies we developed a software, named Walden Personal Communicator (WPC), addressed to the people with multiple and severe disabilities. These people are able to place images (cards) or 3D objects on a delimitated surface (table with a RFID antenna and reader or tablet/smartphone with a NFC reader) in order to communicate with another smartphone/tablet that has the WPC app.
In these last devices, immediately appears the copy of the image-card send by the people with disability from its own device, and at the same time, it enables a speech message. In this way, the user sends the generating message by a synthesizer that is able to read every written information and directly connected to the picture.
- Lancioni G., O'Reilly M., Sigafoos J., Campodonico F., Perilli V., Alberti G., Ricci C. & Miglino O. (sottomesso). A Modified Smartphone-based Program to Support Leisure and Communication Activities in People with Multiple Disabilities. Advances in Neurodevelopmental Disorders (ANDI), Springer.
- Ricci C., Miglino O., Alberti G., Perilli V. & Lancioni G. E. (2017) Speech generating technology to support request responses of persons with intellectual and multiple disabilities. International Journal of Developmental Disabilities, 63:4, 238-245.
- Miglino O. Di Ferdinando A., Di Fuccio R., Rega A., Schembri M. & Ricci C. (2014). Bridging Digital and Physical Educational Games Using RFID/NFC Technologies. Journal of E-Learinig and Knowledge Society. 3, 87-104.
- Ricci C., Di Ferdinando A., Romeo A., Miglino O. (2013). Migliorare la comunicazione attraverso il Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) e gli Speech-Generating Devices (SGDs): il Walden PECS Communicator (WPC). Disabilità Gravi 3. pp 263-272.
MEDIA NEWS (IN ITALIAN)
Il Mattino, 16 dicembre 2017 - Cristian Fuschetto, Restituire il mondo a chi non ce l’ha: sordo-ciechi, un’app cambia la vita. (https://goo.gl/DsWFTe)
TG2 Medicina 33, 6 dicembre 2017 - Intervista a Raffaele Di Fuccio e Orazio Miglino che descrivono l'applicazione (https://youtu.be/ywys7JN5kzA)
Il Sole 24 Ore, 4 ottobre 2017 - Ricci Carlo, Software e sintesi vocale, i progetti innovativi al servizio della disabilità. (https://goo.gl/Tm3W5k)
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