The Brooklyn-based assistive technology startup Furenexo, who believes in creating effective, affordable solutions for people with disabilities, have created the SoundSense, an open source piece of wearable technology to assist people with complete hearing loss. The quarter-sized device vibrates to alert the wearer to important noises and events that occur throughout the day, making the person more attuned to his/her surroundings. Furenexo is currently raising funds through Kickstarter in order to fund the SoundSense along with other planned open-source assistive devices while developing a community around their admirable mission.
Our first product is the SoundSense, a small device that people with hearing loss can wear to recognize loud sounds and alerts, such as smoke alarms, police sirens, or just a friend calling out on the street or laughing outrageously across a room. Until now, technology options for people with hearing loss have largely remained limited to hearing aids – which don’t work for those who are completely hearing impaired. SoundSense uses vibration to alert the user to events, partly to improve safety, but more generally to enable connections with the world in ways most take for granted. …Shortly after launch we’ll be putting the full schematics, design, and parts list for SoundSense on our homepage for open-source sharing so anyone in the community can improve upon it. As we continue to grow you’ll additionally find other project concepts and unmet challenges offered up by friends from the disability community.
photos by Furenexo