Los Angeles, CA – Matt Reamer has created a voice box that helps people with communication challenges speak. Reamer was inspired to create the box because of his older brother Dustin whose on the autism spectrum.
When Dustin was born his parents were told he’d need emergency surgery for his heart. While the operation was successful, it hurt Dustin’s chance to speak normally. His chance was further hindered when was diagnosed with autism several years later.
Since then Dustin and his mother have fabricate a complicated way to communicate with each other. mic.com quoted Matt as saying:
“While [Dustin] has developed a language that [he] and my mom understand slightly, it takes much effort and time to get his thoughts out into actions or words.”
Matt knew there must be another way. That was when he created Dustin’s Words, a voice box that sends texts to his mother’s phone with a push of a button.
The box was built by a 3-D printer and fitted with buttons often used in arcade games, something Matt knew Dustin would be comfortable with.
Matt was quoted as saying:
“In designing this experience for him, I learned much more about him then I had known. This device had to be simple to use, not intimidating at the sight of it, iconographic language and a similar textile to what he is used to in his everyday life.” But Dustin is not the only person the box can help. Matt and six other people have banded together to form a Indigogo campaign to help fund, and make more boxes for non-verbal people in need. What’s more, he and his team are making everything open source, meaning anyone and everyone can learn to make their own box and customize it their needs.”
People can also get a customizable voice box made for them, with their own name in the label. So it’s not just Dustin’s Words, it could be Justin’s Words, or Mandy’s Words, or anyone words that can finally be conveyed.
The IndieGoGo campaign can be found here: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/dustin-s-words–4#/story
Source:Max Plenke on the Tech.Mic website: A Young Designer Gave a Voice to His Brother With Autism — And Created Something Brilliant
Contributed by Althea Estrella Violeta