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 Researchers investigate how the gestures of the blind differ across cultures

This story is from the category Sensors
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Date posted: 22/02/2009

When it comes to how blind or partially sighted individuals gesture, it is a n easy trap to fall into in thinking that there is only one standard way of doing things, based on the conventions of your native culture. This however, is not the case, and is a critical point for designing any AR system to make the lives of said individuals easier.

It is not just that the gestures themselves are different ? you expect that across individuals anyway. It is more that the very concepts the gestures articulate, vary wildly from country to country.

Şeyda ?z?alışkan, assistant professor of psychology, along with Susan Goldin-Meadow of the University of Chicago, recently received a grant from the March of Dimes Foundation to investigate patterns of gestures among congenitally blind speakers in two different cultures. One was the United States, the other, Turkey.

In American English, gestures are tied more with concepts such as running or crawling, while in a structurally different language like Turkish, they are tied with concepts involving directions, such as moving up, down, exiting and entering.

See the full Story via external site: www.physorg.com

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