Until a few decades back, the word Artificial Intelligence (AI) was considered as an illusion , existing only in the pages of a science fiction novel. But this science fiction was made into a reality by a visually impaired software engineer from London.
Saqib Shaikh, a visaully impaired software engineer working in Microsoft, has created an application “Seeing AI” which helps the blind to understand who or what is around them by way of audio messages. Saqib, who lost his vision at the age of seven, witnessed the development of Artificial Intelligence, cognitive computing, image recognition and mobile headset technologies due to his association with Microsoft which helped him develop the application.
From a skateboarder doing a trick to a woman throwing a Frisbee, the application elucidates the details quite appropriately. Moreover, the application is capable of analysing text and can also vividly describe facial expressions. The application is intended to work on both smartphones as well as PivotHead smart glasses and it is built using intelligence APIs from Microsoft Cognitive Services.
From the annals of science fiction to the realm of reality, Saqib’s innovation will be a foundation for millions with visual impairment and will help them SEE the world around them a bit brighter every day.
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