Two 20-year old students in India are working on a device that will help combat illiteracy among the visually impaired on the Indian subcontinent. Spotted over at Fast Co.DesignProject Mudra is an affordable Braille dicta-teacher that offers an alternative to the expensive Braille displays out there-most of which come at a steep price of about $4,000. The team is currently working on a prototype and hopes to find nonprofit partners to make the product available for distribution.

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Students Sanskriti Dawle and Aman Srivastava of the Birla Institute of Technology and Science in Goa, India, developed their $150 Braille Robot during a workshop last September and decided to combine Braille and software called Raspberry Pi to create an easy-to-use display. It is a palm-sized box with six pegs which, when attached to a Raspberry Pi, move up and down. This determines words and characters read aloud through a headphone jack.

Related: The OrCam is a “Google Glass”- Like Device That Aids the Visually Impaired

The device has two modes-the first one lets the user dictate a letter or a number through a headset, the voice is sent to Google’s speech API for identification, and the pins then raise for a Braille character. In the second mode, a set of characters are recited through the audio output while moving the pins accordingly. The device can be made at an affordable price of $150, which means nearly 8 million visually impaired people living in India can have access to technology that allows them to learn the alphabet.

+ Project Mudra

Via Fast Co.Design