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RBF Poland (Telekomunikacja Polska) - b-Link

Added on 22-03-2013

Company

Telekomunikacja Polska

Network

RBF Poland

Year

2010

Business challenge

The TP Group is committed to raise awareness, among telecoms and IT companies, about the importance of including and supporting disabled customer groups.

The challenge is to develop a program that enables physically disabled people to use a computer and to connect with the world.

Description

b-link was developed by Orange Labs Poland along with Technical University of Lodz.  The initiative stands as a testament to the possibility of successful cooperation between a University (which worked on the project), NGOs (which were consulted in the development phase and then tested the program) and Business (which successfully designed and developed the product).

b-Link is based on revolutionary technology, enabling physically disabled people to use computers, simply by blinking their eyes. No technical skills or complicated equipment is required to use b-Link - all that is needed is a computer and web camera. Assistance of another person is necessary when connecting, setting up the camera, and when installing the b-Link program. Once the program has been set up, the disabled person can use the program on his/her own.

After detecting the face of the user and establishing the position of the eyes, the camera follows eye movements and detects control blinks. In this way, only by blinking eyes, one may browse through web sites, use Word Pad, MS Word or MS Outlook, regulate the sound level, and turn the computer off.

The program is based on free Open Source software to ensure that it will be further developed by the global Internet community. b-Link can be downloaded for free from the web sites of Telekomunikacja Polska and Orange, where visitors can also find an instruction film that facilitates the use of this tool. The TP Group has made the program available via OpenSource, which will permit its further improvement.

Impact

  • Working to improve the product
  • All the programme's source codes have been made available on the internet as open source code, which enables the global internet community to collaborate on improving the software.
  • As of today, the programme available in three languages - Polish, English and French. In the coming months, a Spanish version will be launched.
  • Modify the programme specifically to the needs of people with cerebral palsy.

Challenges/Lessons learned:

Over 12 thousand worldwide free downloads of the b-Link software (including numerous thank you e-mails to the Orange Labs Poland and CSR departments from disabled people, their families and other interested parties).

 

More information

All the programme source materials can be found at the following address: http://b-link.sourceforge.net/

b-Link is accessible on our commercial web-pages : www.tp.pl

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