Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Animated 3-D Boosts Deaf Education; "Andy" The Avatar Interprets By Signing

Date:
March 13, 2001
Source:
National Science Foundation
Summary:
"Andy" the avatar talks with his hands. He is a 3D animation, displaying a distinct personality and natural facial expressions that help him interpret words and phrases for hearing-disabled viewers on their computer screens.

"Andy" the avatar talks with his hands. He is a 3D animation, displaying a distinct personality and natural facial expressions that help him interpret words and phrases for hearing-disabled viewers on their computer screens.

Related Articles


Andy is a "signing avatar," one of a pool of Internet-enabled virtual people that translate English into sign language and help deaf and hard-of-hearing children develop language and reading skills. The SigningAvataraTM software, developed with assistance from the National Science Foundation (NSF), represents a step forward in providing universal access to technology.

"Deaf children face considerably more difficulty than hearing children learning to read," said Edwards Sims, chief technology officer of VCom3D of Orlando, Fla., which is marketing the assistive technology. "Our virtual signing interpreters help narrow that gap."

Sims and Carol Wideman developed SigningAvataraTM with grants from NSF's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The software has been praised by teachers of the deaf and experts in computer technology for putting virtual 3D technology, widely used in video games, to use for educational purposes. SigningAvataraTM is used in several Florida school districts and at schools serving deaf students around the country. "Lots of educational software teaches through voice communication," said Sara Nerlove, NSF's program manager. "This is one of the first compelling uses of computer animation technology to benefit an audience with hearing loss, which sometimes struggles with conventional education systems."

The characters interpret words, sentences and complicated concepts into sign language, combining signing, gestures and body language to simulate natural communication. The animations are based on in-depth research of how both hearing and deaf persons use the face and body to communicate.

The interpreters include digital teenagers with unique personalities, such as red-haired Andy and 13-year-old Tonya, and a cyber-lizard named Pete. Besides translating printed text, they "tell" stories, ask follow-up questions and hold interactive conversations with viewers. Their vocabulary includes more than 3,500 words in English and in "Conceptually Accurate Signed English," which includes elements of American Sign Language.

SigningAvataraTM technology is available on an educational CD-ROM or can be licensed to provide signing interpretation of Internet websites, including spoken information. The system uses avatars instead of videos of human signing because avatars can be downloaded faster and can interact in real time. ###

For more information and a demonstration of SigningAvataraTM, see http://www.signingavatar.com/


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by National Science Foundation. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

National Science Foundation. "Animated 3-D Boosts Deaf Education; "Andy" The Avatar Interprets By Signing." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 March 2001. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/03/010307071110.htm>.
National Science Foundation. (2001, March 13). Animated 3-D Boosts Deaf Education; "Andy" The Avatar Interprets By Signing. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 19, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/03/010307071110.htm
National Science Foundation. "Animated 3-D Boosts Deaf Education; "Andy" The Avatar Interprets By Signing." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/03/010307071110.htm (accessed April 19, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Computers & Math News

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

WikiLeaks Refuses To Let Sony Hack Die, Posts Database

WikiLeaks Refuses To Let Sony Hack Die, Posts Database

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) WikiLeaks&apos; Julian Assange says the hacked emails and documents "belong in the public domain." Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Create Self-Powering Camera

Scientists Create Self-Powering Camera

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Apr. 17, 2015) American scientists build a self-powering camera that captures images without using an external power source, allowing it to operate indefinitely in a well-lit environment. Elly Park reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
The State Of Virtual Reality

The State Of Virtual Reality

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Virtual Reality is still a young industry. What’s on offer and what should we expect from our immersive new future? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cybercrime Could Cost $400 Bln

Cybercrime Could Cost $400 Bln

Reuters - Business Video Online (Apr. 16, 2015) Representatives from around 160 countries gather at the Hague to discuss cyber space and cyber security, including the dilemmas and challenges regarding the evolution of the internet. Ciara Lee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins