The National Federation for the Blind and Virginia Tech are developing a car that could be driven by the blind. They are planning on releasing a prototype by 2011.
So how do you drive a car if you can’t see? The car would use non-visual interfaces to map the area around the car. The driver would be given signals through small vibrations, noises, and tiny air holes in the steering wheel to alert the driver about their surroundings.
The Associated Press reports that the car will not be a self-driven car, but instead, it will give a blind person the capability of driving themselves.
“We’re exploring areas that have previously been regarded as unexplorable,” said Dr. Marc Maurer, president of the National Federation of the Blind. “We’re moving away from the theory that blindness ends the capacity of human beings to make contributions to society.”