The world first electronic guide for the blind (smart white cane) enables the design and use of “tactile” pavement markings that are not detectable or problematic for the environment, using a special white cane.
The smart white cane system consists of placing a guide rail on or under the walking surface, which is electronically detected by radio waves using a specially designed white-bot. A sensor at the end of the stick close to the walking surface picks up the radio frequency signals when the white stick is used. An electronic system in the cane’s neck indicates the direction of the guide line by means of an acoustic signal and/or vibration. When designing the stick, it was important that it’s size and weight distribution should not deviate from that of a conventional white cane. The smart white cane is suitable for indoor use in public buildings, workplaces and at home to help the blind and partially sighted people find their way around, or to make outdoor events accessible.
The system has also been tested by the National Association of the Blind and Visually Impaired and has been rated as good. The patenting process for the development is ongoing.