The world of a hearing impaired person is much different than that of somebody capable of discerning different frequencies and magnitudes of sound waves via their ears. This is especially true when hearing impaired people play video games. In most video games, surround sound is fed through some sort of digital output to headphones or speakers. Based on this information, the gamer can discern where a particular stimulus is coming from and whether or not that is a threat to their wellbeing within the virtual world. People with reliable hearing have a distinct advantage over hearing impaired people in the fact that they can gather information not just from what is in front of them, but from every angle relative to the way they're facing. The purpose of this project was to find a way to even the playing field, so that a person hard of hearing could also receive the sensory feedback that any other person would get while playing video games To do this, visual surround sound was created. This is a system that takes a surround sound input, and illuminates LEDs around the periphery of glasses based on the direction, frequency and amplitude of the audio wave. This provides the user with crucial information on the whereabouts of different elements within the game. In this paper, the research and development of Visual Surround Sound is discussed along with its viability in regards to a deaf person's ability to learn the technology, and decipher the visual cues.
- Visual Surround Sound and its Applications
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