beacon - making the blind visible at night project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound
$1,203 pledged of $3,000 goal
backers
By Young Jang, Scott Cowell.
$1,203 pledged of $3,000 goal
backers

About this project

beacon is a 3d printed prototype that helps to increase the visibility of the blind in low light conditions.

 

A typical walk through Manhattan can be a real challenge for anyone. Sidewalks are crammed with tourists, often looking up at something; locals are usually in a hurry speed walking to somewhere, and to make things worse, many of us also have our heads buried in cell phones.

Imagine being blind and navigating through a city like this.

Every day, we pass by a community for the visually impaired and routinely noticed people accidentally bumping into blind pedestrians.

This is really concerning, and as designers, we started asking ourselves  - what can we do about this? We started brainstorming potential solutions to this problem.  

This is why we designed beacon.

 

 

 

beacon started with a class project where we developed an enhanced version of the typical blind cane.  We added a water sensor that could identify puddles and slippery floor surfaces and LEDs to alert distracted pedestrians.  After building a prototype we tested the device with the local blind community and received some really great feedback and reviews.

However, the device was expensive and overly complicated. So, we went back to the drawing board. So far we’ve made 2 prototypes. 

Now, Young and I want to transform this idea into a real product that is simple, easy to use, and helps to improve the lives of the visually impaired. So we asked ourselves:

Is it possible to develop a prototype that is inexpensive, functional, and easily attachable to existing canes?

Will you join forces with us? Our goal is to raise funds to develop prototype #3 (a commercially viable proof of concept).

Our parameters for success are: 

1. Universality - able to easily retrofit into most cane models.
2. Motion activated illumination.
3. Water detection (with audible alert).
4. Useful geometry for the tip enclosure. 
5. Affordable - $30 or less.

We can accomplish this with your help! 
Thank you for your support!


Hi everyone! We’re Young and Scott, two interaction design graduate students at the School of Visual Arts.

We’re interested using design as a tool for solving everyday problems and are constantly exploring ways to improve the lives of others through the meaningful and responsible application of technology.

 Interested in collaborating? We’d love to hear from you!

Risks and challenges

The money raised in this campaign will go toward developing prototype (#3).

As with any research and development effort, delays could arise from issues like material availability, technology limitations, and errors in design.

Our objective is to offer practical, low-tech solutions to these challenges, minimizing such risks.

Our preliminary designs and principles have proven reliable and we’re confident that we can bring these ideas to a finalized, functional design within the given timeframe.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Thanks for supporting us

    Your name will be honorably enshrined in our backers “wall of fame” (featured on our website).

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    8 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Handwritten thank you card

    Thank you for your support! We will send a personal, handwritten note to express our appreciation.

    Your name will be honorably enshrined in our backers “wall of fame” (featured on our website).

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    17 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Donate 1 Beacon

    At this level of support, one Beacon will be donated to a visually impaired person in need.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Limited 7 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Buy 1 beacon

    At this level of support, you will receive one beacon.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Donate 2 Beacons

    At this level of support, two Beacons will be donated to visually impaired persons in need.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Buy 2 beacons

    At this level of support, you will receive two beacons.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    1 backer
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $140 or more About $140

    Donate 3 Beacons

    At this level of support, three Beacons will be donated to visually impaired persons in need.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $140 or more About $140

    Buy 3 beacons

    At this level of support, you will receive three beacons.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Only United States
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Become a sponsor

    At this level of support, your name will be officially included on our sponsor list and you will be updated on our process and upcoming product.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    0 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (14 days)