Microsoft researching ways to help illiterate people use computers

Posted on Thursday, March 02 2006 @ 10:25 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
One of Microsoft's research labs in India is working on a system that would help illiterate domestic workers in India with families seeking their services.

The system uses video, photo and voice commands to tell women what jobs are available, the salary and where they are.
The goal is to help the women see how technology can make finding work more efficient, as the first step toward creating broader tools to help illiterate people benefit from technological advances.

Researchers on the Indian project say they have had to overcome their preconceptions about how the technology should work, and why people would want to use it. Kentaro Toyama, a researcher overseeing the project, said the first big hurdle was to understand what kind of computer images actually made sense to the domestic workers.
More details over at Business Week.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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