Well when I skimmed through my earlier blogs I realized they all in some way or other they all talk about food. So this time around, let me blog about my work and things that serve as food for my thought. I spent the first 3 weeks adding features to the main unit and existing modes on the SABT(Stand alone Braille Tutor). I made the device beep when it does not have the memory card in it. This seemingly simple task took more than it should have as all the sound files where in the memory card, which meant I had to figure out a way to generate the beep elsewhere.
Based on feedback from initial user testing and from previous observations, I made few changes to the animal game where the student has to identify the animal from its sound. I added a submode for the student to learn animal sounds before they could start identifying the animal. I spent rest of the time added other UI features like the ability to repeat questions, give hints after mistakes, etc.
This week I started my design of a new mode for teaching students contracted Braille, something similar to the short hand notation that we use for normal writing. Braille as it is, is hard to write. But students of 10th grade @Mathru blind school follow the same syllabus as for any other regular school in the city. This would mean that they would have a lot to write and practice a lot of text. Hence since their 4th grade they are being taught contracted braille. I met with one of the teachers who teaches contractions. I learnt from her on how they teach braille contractions, what are the various contractions they use at Mathru. She then handed me a rule book for contractions. So far I have thought out the design for implementation of the mode and started with my code. Sometime around next week we would be testing this with the teachers and students to get their feedback to see how we can improve it further.
Meanwhile I have also been working on reviewing literature on related work on technologies for teaching braille, setting up and debugging the (Braille writing tutor)BWT+Smart phone which is one of the possible new projects that we might take up this year. Starting midway next week I would be dedicating most of my time working on the new project that we decide to take up for the internship. Will update more about my user testing experiences on these soon.