POWERING CHANGE: WOMEN IN INNOVATION & CREATIVITY

KRISTINA TSVETANOVA, blitab, 2016

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Kristina_TsvetanovaMore than a quarter of a billion people in the world suffer from vision impairment. Beyond the day-to-day challenges vision impairment causes, it can also exclude people from an increasingly digital world.

Created by Kristina Tsvetanova, BLITAB® is the first Braille tablet computer to tackle the digital exclusion that blind and partially sighted people can experience. The computer uses disruptive actuating technology to create tactile text and graphics, offering a route into computing for those who would otherwise be unable to experience it.

Kristina’s invention was inspired by a sight impaired University friend. She noticed how difficult it was for her friend to follow an online course and decided to address the problem head on. 

BLITAB consists of two screens; a lower screen displays content from the internet – including maps and graphics; an upper screen uses a liquid technology to interpret this content and produce small dots on the touch screen that can be read as braille. There is also a text to speech capability to provide further clarity.

Despite the technical complexity of turning content into braille, BLITAB is far more accessible than many other braille technology products.  The objective is to sell BLITAB for less than $500, enabling the visually impaired to access content at little more than the cost of an iPad. 

Image: © BLITAB Technology GmbH

Product Marketing Manager Tom Meerstadt explains why Kristina Tsvetanov is his favourite woman innovator.

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