Many thanks to :
- the people at Microsoft, Vanesse Arnauld, Vincent Bellet ;
- the University of Orleans and its departments ;
- our teachers, Mr Moal, Mr Boichut and Mrs Bousdira-Semmar ;
- the families and children that helped us, India Rose Morlon Gimenez and Alessia Martins ;
- Dell, for lending us a Latitude XT2 computer.
for all of us...
Or so we think.
Autism is a disorder of neural development characterized by many signs ; among those are language impairments, hyperactivity or hypoactivity, violence against others or oneself, anxiety or a latent frustration.
Although a tenth to a fourth of autism cases is due to genetics conditions, the causes are still unknown for a vast majority of autistic people.
There are between 60,000 and 100,000 autists in France only, and about four to six percent worldwide.
Communication, for many individuals with autism, is hard and in some cases reduced to next to nothing.
Our aspiration is to make their life easier, help them adapt to their environment and give them back their proper place, that of a child among all others.
The Touch screen is the most suitable technology for our application, because it is really hard for autistic children to use a mouse. It allows the child to have fun learning while keeping him focused.
Our application is inspired by the binders used by the autistic children.
It consists of a digital catalogue of pictograms, ordered by categories, all of them fully customizable to the child's handicap, based on his abilities and his known vocabulary. The application contains a base collection of pictograms that can be expanded using packs made by the parents or the community.
Every component of the application responds to Touch events. Touching one pictogram selects and inserts it in the sentence strip at the bottom.
That is, the child builds a sentence touching the pictograms relevant to his request. A correction control system is included in learning mode.
And it's my duty, as the speech synthesizer, to say the sentence out loud.
Parents have access to an isolated administration panel, not accessible to the children, where they will be able to change the application settings. For example : the background color, the font, or the pictograms size.
Adding a new pictogram is a piece of cake.
And here is the result : every change is immediatly reflected in the main application.