Project Goals

Today's screen readers and audio browsers provide a quite poor user experience, giving mono-dimensional representation of the page, which offers very low semantics compared to a graphic browser rendering.

We are developing Ray to give blind people a bi-dimensional interaction system.

By touching a pressure sensitive device, whose surface maps the viewport of a graphic browser, the user triggers the playing of different sounds, according to the kind of block hes finger is on, e.g.:

A click on a choosen block triggers a text-to-speech system, which gives an audio rendering of the actual content of the block.

System architecture

The system has been implemented as a Firefox extension. This choice provides a cross-os application, also taking advantage of the integrated html+css parser which allows accessing each DOM's node computed style.

Figure 1 shows the system structure; Figure 2 depicts an extension schema, describing modules and dependencies from other extensions.

Figure 1: Ray architecture
Figure 1: Ray architecture
Figure 2: Ray extension architecture
Figure 2: Ray extension architecture


Since we're currently in alpha phase, we haven't package our extension, to ease developing process. We provide the source code: you need to put a single-line text file in your Firefox extension directory (under your profile directory) which contains the full path of the root directory of the source code.

You also need to manually install the two needed extensions

People and contacts

Ray has been developed by Fabio Fidanza during his Laurea Magistrale in Ingegneria Informatica thesis. You may contact him at cassetta AT fabiofidanza DOT com. You may also contact Prof. Paolo Merialdo at merialdo AT dia DOT uniroma3 DOT it.

Available thesis topics