ISSN: 1304-7191 | E-ISSN: 1304-7205
An Eye-Controlled Wearable Communication and Control System for ALS Patients: Smarteyes
1Baskent University, Department of Computer Engineering, ANKARA
2Atilim University, Department of Electrical & Electronics Engineering, ANKARA
3Hacettepe University, Department of Geomatics Engineering, ANKARA
Sigma J Eng Nat Sci 2017; 8(): 107-116
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ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that involves the malfunctioning of motor neurons. The ability of the brain to initiate and control muscle movement is lost subsequent to death of motor neurons. People with ALS present the greatest challenge regarding communication issues. Besides, caring for a loved one with ALS is not an easy task. In this study, we developed an eye-controlled wearable system called “SmartEyes” which improves the life qualities of ALS patients and their caregivers by offering two important skills. The first skill is communicating through predefined voice messages generated by a computer and the second one is controlling several peripherals located in the patient’s environment. The developed system is novel in that; the patients can easily vocalize their needs and requests with a few sequential eye movements. Moreover, they can control several household items including desk lamp, rolling curtain, television and air conditioner in the same way. The preliminary experiments showed that the performance of the system is satisfactory. The accuracy of the system commands based on pupil gaze direction was tested on several users and about an accuracy of 89% was achieved. It is believed that the developed system has attracted the patients’ and their caregivers’ interest very much and this is the main motivation in improving our system.