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LOS ANGELES, CA, December 27, 2022 /24-7PressRelease/ -- "I want to develop a platform that provides equal educational opportunities for both students without disabilities and students who are visually impaired to participate in online classes and shares expertise that has not been previously provided, including mathematics."
This is the aspiration of LightVision Inc. (CEO Jin-ha Jung), which is participating in the 'Close-to-Life Contact-Free Leading Service Project' implemented by the Ministry of Science and ICT and the National IT Industry Promotion Agency (Chairman Seong-wook Heo, hereafter referred to as NIPA). The company is an AI technology social venture based on intellectual property research and development (IP-R&D). After discovering needs through big data analysis patent, they provide services that give social value based on AI technology.
They are developing an online video education service based on a contact-free education service platform that can cover special education. Specifically, they develop and provide a sharing and participatory platform so that people who are visually impaired wish to receive secondary education or higher can receive contact-free online classes without any inconvenience.
Various features including the functions of 'Braille Translation (changing normal characters into braille)' and 'Reverse Braille Translation (changing braille to normal printed characters)' and AI image recognition to improve class concentration, which is the biggest drawback contact-free classes, technology, are implemented.
'Close-to-Life Contact-Free Leading Service Project', which LightVision is participating and has been running for its 2nd year, is a project that NIPA has been implementing since last year. It is a project that develops, demonstrates, and spreads contact-free leading services that are closely related to the daily life of the people, and the response from participating companies is very positive. LightVision, established in October 2018, is selected as a free task (remote education evaluation) for this project and develops and demonstrates a platform for 'Contact-free secondary education services for the people who are visually impaired'.
Jin-ha Jung, CEO of LightVision, said, "For those who may be alienated from the benefits of innovation, a new service incorporating artificial intelligence technology through TRIZ(Russian acronym for Teoriya Resheniya Izobretatelskikh Zadatch, in English, it means Theory of Solving Inventive Problem)-based intellectual property analysis. Profits generated from solving social problems are reinvested in R&D to solve other social problems or returned to society to improve the technological capabilities of other social ventures. We are developing an online secondary education platform using AI Braille translation and reverse Braille translation engine for contact-free education for the people who are visually impaired based on SW experts and global marketing personnel."
LightVision's service is a contact-free online education service for the people who are visually impaired equipped with an AI Braille and reverse Braille translation engine applied with sentence conversion technology, and includes chatting and learning data sharing functions that enable problem solving. It provides an educational environment where not only specialized teachers but also general teachers or instructors who do not know Braille can teach students who are visually impaired without difficulty.
Existing one-way Braille technology was helpful in delivering information through letters to the people who are visually impaired. However, for two-way communication in which the people who are visually impaired directly deliver their thoughts, a technology that translates Braille characters is needed. CEO Jin-ha Jung said, "The number of Braille characters is much smaller than the language (printed characters) used by people without disabilities. In addition, when a foreign language such as English, mathematical symbols, and special characters are mixed, a lot of information is lost in the conversion process when converting from Braille back to normal characters, so smooth reverse Braille translation is virtually impossible with existing technology. In order to solve this problem, we secured datasets of Korean, English, science, and mathematics textbooks learned in the secondary education process (essential middle and high school educational contents for people without disability) to implement necessary skills such as sentences, units, and special symbols. AI training was conducted for this purpose, and as a result, a Braille-Reverse Braille translation engine was successfully developed. This platform can be applied to general video conferencing, but plans to expand and launch a platform that can be used by the people who are visually impaired as well as people without disability."
LightVision technology enables the people who are visually impaired to ask questions and get answers through Braille chatting during class. This allows the student who are visually impaired to actively participate in class. In addition, a function that converts to Braille data has been implemented so that the people who are visually impaired can share various texts and images that are not recognized by the existing screen sharing method.
According to the company, due to the spread of contact-free education methods following the prolonged post-COVID-19, it was difficult for students who are visually impaired to receive proper education. This is because compared to the various functions of existing online education platforms, there are almost no functions accessible to the people who are visually impaired. In fact, most of the classes are conducted in one direction, and there is a one-time education platform, but there is a problem in that the continuity of education is poor due to the lack of regular updates. The disadvantages include the insufficient number of special education teachers, the difficulty of general teachers conducting contact-free education for the students who are visually impaired, and the difficulty of managing students who are absent during classes and cumbersome attendance checks caused by contact-free classes.
CEO Jin-ha Jung said, "We want to provide a platform that is a contact-free online secondary education which improves the problems of the existing online education platform, automatically checks attendance through a face recognition solution, and enables two-way communication based on participation and sharing through a simple and intuitive UI."
In order to achieve this, LightVision provides • the subjects of secondary education (required curriculum for middle school to high school for students without disability), lecture materials in mathematics, science, and a second foreign language in addition to Korean and English are provided so that they can be used with AI Braille-Reverse Braille translation
• Classes that were previously limited to voice support can also be chatted and show problem solving using the AI Braille-Reverse Braille translation engine, allowing free Q&A in the middle of class. • technology with face-recognition in order for visually impaired students to check attendance, since there is a difficulty in identifying the location of the camera located in the center of the screen • a function that automatically pops up on the teacher's screen when a student raises his or her hand to ask a question.
The main demand for this company's service is schools or institutions for the students who are visually impaired, and companies that have Braille input/output devices (Braille information terminals) hardware (HW) for the people who are visually impaired. In addition, schools and institutions that want integrated education (education in which both people without disability and people who are visually impaired take the same online classes) and secondary education (essential middle and high school educational contents for students without disability) using computers after Braille learning are provided.
CEO Jin-ha Jung said, "Currently, most people who are visually impaired have difficulty in classes without specialized teachers or assistant teachers, and there is a problem that lecture materials that students without disability can easily receive are not provided in a timely manner. In addition to providing lecture content and images in Braille, we plan to provide a chat function that enables participatory classes and group classes."
LightVision is located in a social venture hub center, which is operated by the Seongdong-gu Office', which naturally led to the development of technology for the people who are visually impaired. According to the company, the number of people who are visually impaired in the world is about 280 million, and the Braille book market is worth 60 trillion KRW. Because access to information relies on printed braille, most of it is focused on creating printed Braille using a one-way Braille engine. In the midst of this situation, as the unexpected spread of COVID-19, contact-free online classes suddenly increased, and most people who visually impaired faced an environment in which it was difficult to access equal education services.
CEO Jin-ha Jung said, "Compared to students without disability being provided with textbooks in advance, the process of converting a regular book (normal characters used by people without disability) into a Braille book takes a lot of time and money, so they are not getting equal opportunities. In the future, based on AI braille and reverse Braille translation technology, we will provide Braille translated textbooks for contact-free online secondary education services for the people who are visually impaired, and seek to equalize educational opportunities by receiving integrated education for the people who are visually impaired and people without disability together.
In order to provide contact-free online secondary education services for the people who are visually impaired, LightVision provides •chat using AI Braille-Reverse Braille Translation technology •Conversion and sharing of lecture materials into Braille •Automatic attendance check through face recognition •Technology that recognizes the contents of an image and transforms it into text. In particular, feedback from users was actively reflected, and students without disability and students who are visually impaired shared chatting and lecture materials during class to communicate with each other.
In addition, the AI technology applied to the chatting and lecture data provision function is not text-to-character conversion, but sentence conversion technology, and special symbols, Unicode, and exception processing technology are applied. Through this, an online platform is provided where even the people who are visually impaired can study secondary education courses (essential middle and high school educational contents for non-disabled people) of Korean, English, mathematics, and science together with students without disability.
In 2020, LightVision developed an 'AI image recognition solution for the improvement of the mobility of the people who are visually impaired' through the Ministry of Science and ICT and NIPA's AI voucher project and received the Digital New Deal Award. In addition, there is a history of getting an excellent success after conducting a private intelligence information service expansion project. Last year, after being selected as the 22nd company out of 500 companies in the 'IMP (Idea Market Place)', a technology venture competition hosted by the POSCO headquarters, the POSCO IMP Fund investment contract was concluded. In addition, they were selected from the quasi-governmental organization, Korea Credit Guarantee Fund, as the First Penguin Company selection and received direct funding, and also received Excellent Technology Company T-3 rating from NICE D&B and Korea Enterprise Data's TCB(Technology Credit Evaluation) in 2021 and 2022.
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