What Are We Working On?

Care and  labor platforms

This project investigates the ethical frameworks involved with using technologies to coordinate paid care work for older adults and experiences of technology designers, caregivers, and family members. 

Scaffolding care conversations

We are using voice assistants to design ways for older adults and their caregivers to engage in difficult care conversations.

Obfuscation and visual assistance

Visual assistance technologies have access benefits, but often require compromising privacy and security concerns. We are researching ways to design accessible and explainable obfuscation technologies to safeguard the privacy of Blind people.

Memory and aging artifacts

We are investigating memory through personal belongings, heirloom objects, and other memory artifacts. In doing so, we hope to benefit and sustain individual, family, and community histories.

AI-based assistive technologies tend to assume 'universal' needs of BVI people and are thus one-size-fits-all, rather than accounting for unique differences and desires. This figure shows an example where a blind user uses Seeing AI to read a letter and trying to find out about the sender name Rebecca. However, it'll read many other unnecessary and distracting details.

DIY assistive technologies

We are understanding how and why blind and visually impaired people customize and hack assistive technologies, and design systems to support DIY assistive technologies to suit their unique needs. 

OmniScribe to make 360° videos accessible. A describer is using the OmniScribe web authoring interface, which supports them to better understand the 360° content to author standard audio descriptions and create immersive labels, in order to enable BVI people to interact with 360° content immersively using smartphones and headphones. The picture shows a man wearing wireless headphones, holding a mouse in his right hand to operate a computer and use our OmniScribe for audio description. On the computer is the OmniScribe interface.

Immersive media accessibility

We are developing systems to make immersive media accessible to people with disabilities, e.g., 360° Videos, AR/VR. 

The user is holding the phone in portrait mode with one hand, and aiming the camera towards an inaccessible microwave control panel. The user’s other hand is exploring on the panel. The VizLens iOS app is providing audio feedback and guidance to the user.

Physical interfaces accessibility

We are developing and deploying systems to make real-world physical interfaces accessible to people with visual and motor impairments.

icon of a hand touching braille dots

Audio-tactile graphics

We conducted workshops with educators to design audio-tactile graphics and evaluated how teachers use them to support students in classrooms

computer showing a cartoon of a software update

Accessible software updates

The project uses a socio-technical lens to understand how people with visual impairments in India experience and recover from disruptive software updates.