Looking Through Google Lenses

BY: CLAIRE KIM

Kids who suffer from autism often find themselves restricted in their expressions and emotions. Struggling with this communication barrier, those with autism tend to be misinterpreted as people associate their loud screaming to be just an aimless form of excitement when really they are crying for help. In such cases, getting through the situation can be tough.

Noticing these patterns, engineers from Google have designed a revolutionary pair of eyewear in which children with autism can wear for better communication. Sending signals on their glasses, telling them what emotions the counterpart is feeling, has proven to be an efficient and cost-effective way for autistic patients to communicate.

Though originally surfaced back in 2015, many users and health professionals have criticized the technology as being unsafe in regards to personal privacy. Thankfully, with the realization that such glass wear shows more benefits than stated cons, Google Glasses for Autism have been examined once again in light of the growing issues of mental health and disabilities.

Away from this personal commercialized approach, other companies have also attempted to market their “autism-care glasses” in other ways such as schools and education. Most notably seen with Brain Power, a startup in Massachusetts, they claim that their glass wear is not a medical device but rather a “teaching tool” instead for students to improve their academic capabilities. Aiming to allow autistic children to experience real education, these eyeglasses show promising results that such a goal can be accomplished over time.

Whether it’s for at-home use or for at-school use, glasses wired for autistic children have recently become an appreciated version of technology. Addressing the health discomforts as well as the hindrance of social interactions, these glasses have changed the game for children who suffer from autism immensely. It’s a solution to the problem we have faced for many years and an inspiration for greater innovations soon for healthcare.

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