The Only Disability In Life Is A Bad Attitude
A multiservice detachable device for the elderly and handicapped to solve some of the daily challenges faced by millions worldwide.
We thought of this idea keeping in mind the problems the elderly and disabled face (including our grandparents and relatives) in their everyday lives.
What is iWheel-inator ?
A central promise of technology and all its advancements is to bring a better world through solving inherent problems of human society and its individuals. The predominance of smart devices is so obvious that it is now impossible to imagine a world without them around. However, there appears to be a lack of consideration regarding accessibility in contemporary technology, with the industry being heavily biased towards people without impairments of any kind. Nevertheless, things like a smaller market size and weak representation in government and industry are no longer viable justifications for a pervasive tendency towards the aforementioned specific catering. Apart from non-technical impediments, there are also some major technical challenges in providing these people with high quality services on par with natural human capabilities. iWheel-inator aims to capitalize technology and make a difference is in the realm of physcial impairment.
Ordinary tasks become difficult and make the disabled elderly less independent. Simple things such as moving around or recognising who they're conversing with become exceedingly difficult. We believe we can address these issues, along with a cheap device we call ‘iWheel-inator’ that we intend to design and build. iWheel-inator is an intelligent digital assistant who can understand requests of its user via voice commands and can provide thoughtful responses through its voice while also performing various functions. iWheel-inator tries to find answers to questions by gathering information from the environment that it sees through a high-quality built-in camera. The concept for iWheel-inator is a simple one, with the aim to make it as seamless as possible to integrate into daily lives. Hence, we want to incorporate the device as an attachment to regular wheelchairs to provide a nice viewpoint for the camera while minimizing impedance with the user’s activity. Essentially, the device is intended to be a third leg for the user and make tasks, simple or complex much easier to deal with while also eliminating the need for smart phones.
Why iWheel-inator ?
People living with disabilities – whether hidden or visible – have hopes, dreams and frustrations just like everyone else. There are many struggles people with disabilities go through.
Hence, iWheel-inator, acting as a plug and play instrument provides features which help the user: 1) Recognise who's in front of them and whether he/she is known to the user from having met before. 2) Eliminate the need for a smart phone by substituting it with the device itself, say- weather information, reading the news, etc. 3) Read prescriptions and other such illegible documents. 4) Navigate to and through unknown routes without depending on anyone else.
These features were thought of while keeping in mind how forgetful the elderly tend to be and how weak their sense organs like the eyes become with age.
Why is iWheel-inator better?
iWheel-inator empowers users with a distinctive set of features that other competitors are nowhere close to.
It’s all about the unique user experience that iWheel-inator delivers. iWheel-inator is supposed to be like a buddy who is there to support and guide its users. It is a new platform and isn’t comparable to any other existing solution.
iWheel-inator is fully voice controlled and hence, with iWheel-inator users can get what they are looking for just by asking for it.
According to our estimations, the cost of iWheel-inator is a lot lower than a high-end device like iPhone. Currently, seeing AI and such technology is only available on iPhones and such devices. This makes the smart phones less accessible as a solution due to the high cost associated. Thus, iWheel-inator is an excellent alternative to smartphones (not to forget again, how forgetful elders are and how regularly they forget to take their phones- if someone is handicapped, there's no way they'll leave their homes without their wheelchair though).
Challenges we ran into
A few technical difficulties we faced were integrating the Google Maps Direction API as well as implementing the facial recognition technology into our project. We were also unable to find appropriate hardware to demo the product as a wheelchair.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
We delivered what we had planned to implement and that's something we pride ourselves in.
What we learned
Each one of us had to learn something or the other as we divided our work into modules and worked upon each feature separately. We learnt how to use GCP, Google Maps Direction API, etc.
What's next for iWheel-inator
We intend to add more features, maintain and improve the existing features and User Experience in the near future. Once this is done, we hope to turn iWheel-inator into a well-established startup.
Want to know our business model?
iWheel-inator is a plug and play device as mentioned before and hence the major part of "our" expenditure- the actual wheelchair cost is cut down.
We plan to give tablets (acting as display screens) to our users which would be integrated into the exisiting wheelchair by our technical assistants.
Keeping this in mind, we expect the cost of product to be around $100 and the selling price to be around $130 (additional $1 per month for database costs and improvements to the product).
How we built it
An image describing our Tech Stack has been uploaded.