USA- from January the software built for Steven Hawking, will be available for free for quadriplegics

From January, Intel (owned by Microsoft), will put in free trade the software developed for Steven Hawking, the greatest living astrophysicist, which allows him to communicate despite being totally paralyzed by ALS (multiple sclerosis).


Communicating and being understood is not easy for people suffering from motor neurone disease or quadriplegia, like Professor Stephen Hawking. Living with strong limits to motor skills, that almost paralyze you, is a debilitating situation, that technology can make less harsh. Intel has been trying to do this for more than twenty years working with Hawking just to study how to improve the communication of someone who cannot speak with his mouth.


In the last two decades a team of Intel engineers have focused on the intricate relationship between man and machine, to find a meeting point between the needs of the people and what a computer can offer, notoriously a handful of bits. The collaboration has allowed Intel to upgrade the communication system of Stephen Hawking, aged for at least twenty years to allow to express themselves more naturally and quickly, so as to continue to carry out his normal activities, including work and time free.


Without altering the method used for years by Hawking, Intel has created a more modern platform, faster and more accurate than the last one. Speaking of numbers, Bloomberg says that now the Cambridge professor can type, with the sensor placed on his cheek, twice as fast as before and to perform daily activities such as web browsing, document editing and going from one page to another with a ten times less timing. The whole system is simplified by an infrared sensor mounted on the glasses of Hawkins, which enables him to identify the elements on the screen by the displacement of his cheek. Programs such as the predictive keyboard SwiftKey, already known by those who own a Smartphone or tablet, allow you to type fewer characters to complete a speech before sending the information to the speech synthesizer that is connected to the computer.


The most extraordinary aspect of all this, however, is that the proposed platform from Intel will become freely available to researchers and developers from January 2015, with the hope that it will be the basis for a modern system of communication for those suffering from neural and quadriplegics problems. No coincidence that the package developed by Intel can be customized to the needs of different people by enabling automatic touch, movements of the eyes, eyebrows and other communicative inputs.