6th sense, a project for everyone's autonomy

The objective of the "6th sense" project is to develop a device allowing blind or visually impaired people to perceive their environment. Our goal is to achieve this by transmitting a picture to the visual cortex of the brain using skin sensory receptors.

6th sense, a project for everyone's autonomy

The objective of the "6th sense" project is to develop a device allowing blind or visually impaired people to perceive their environment. Our goal is to achieve this by transmitting a picture to the visual cortex of the brain using skin sensory receptors.

Social and solidarity-based economy as a core value

Artha France only exists to serve of a cause. An economy whose first purpose is social and not not lucrative. We carry a collective project whose social goal is a better insertion of visually-impaired people in today's society. Our company is interested in people before money, that is why we have a collective and democratic functionning, and favor local suppliers.

Project progress

Proof of concept

The first prototype allowed to validate the concept thanks to the clinical trials.
January 2019

Wearable system

The current version is miniaturized and has an improved autonomy of about 6h. It takes into account the users feedback.
October 2019

Next objectives

Global performances improvement, optimisation in order to be useful in every use case scenario.

Final product

The device will have a more accessible and modular software and a more discreet design that will be thought to ease the manufacturing process.

Learning

To start their learning process, users can train using several videogames. We set up testing univers in particular in Minecraft, which has 3 main objectives :

Training

Some learning time is required in order to get used to the usage of the device and to be able to exploit its full potential.

Validation

Integrated analytics tools in the program are able to determine improvements in users gameplay and point out areas for improvement for the device.

Potentiel and limitations

These games allow us to see the limits of our product, and allow blind beta-testers to imagine living with it in everyday life.

The concept
Origins

Our work is based on Paul Bach Y Rita's research. He highligted the possibility to substitute the sense of sight by the sense of touch. Here is the device he used in the 80's for his experiment.

Our vision

To learn all about sense substitution, watch here our TEDx conference in Montansier theater in Versailles (France)

Clinical trials

Clinical trials allowed us to validate the concept and to assess the limitations of the human body regarding this "new sense".

You can see above a typical learning curve on a 20 minutes session. The user rapidly reaches the exercise limits. Knowing that he just made a good score, his attention and therefore his results usually go down but after that he regains his concentration and reaches an even better score. This example allow us to visualize the learning speed, the variation of performances according to the attention level, and the effect of fatigue
This data is analyzed and compared with all of the users in order to have a precise model, and get more intel from one single chart.
Tanks to users feedback, the time needed to get used to the device has considerably decreased, indeed in only 20 minutes a blind new tester is able to get out of different mazes in the game Minecraft.

The team

Rémi
du Chalard

Benjamin
d'Hardemare

Geneviève
Chantepie

Alain
Salmon

Francois
Outters

Marie
Peray

Albert
d'Anthoüard

Smaël
Berahal

Wandrille
du Chalard

Gabrielle
de Puységur

Amaury
Buguet

Raoul
Gilard

Scientific advisors

Sylvie
Chokron

Malika
Auvray

Alain
Ripart

Alexandre
Coffin

Hugues de
Montalembert

Support