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Natalie Clark
The global ConnectAbility Challenge – technology changing lives
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Inventors and coders from around the world have put their heads together in the global ConnectAbility Challenge


To mark the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disability Act, the global ConnectAbility Challenge  was held over three months to find the best new mobile and wireless technology to support people with disability live their lives. Inventors and coders from around the world entered the software competition with sixty-three entrants from 15 countries came up with some brilliant ideas for affordable easy to use solutions to every day accessibility problems.

The eight prize winning accessibility inventions are excellent examples of how technology is changing lives and creating a more inclusive society:

1. KenesicMouse

“Nextgen hands free computer access with 50+ input signals”, the Kenesic Mouse software lets users control a computer with a 3D camera that picks up facial expressions and head movement. Developed by a video gamer, it even allows the user to play demanding video games.

2. AVA

AVA is a mobile app that transcribes speech into text and lets you see in real time who says what around you.


The Laugh out Loud Aid! is a digital tool that sends the user reminders to train their brain with social and daily living skills. The concept was developed by Seth Truman who has Asperger’s and his dad to help kids with autism and ADHD remember things they’re supposed to do in the day.

4. DrumPants

DrumPants is a trigger activated personal assistant for people with limited mobility or difficulty in speaking. Simply taps wearable soft buttons to trigger phrases through an app on your phone.

5. EnLight

EnLight is beacon based navigation for the visually impaired. It allows people with vision disabilities to scan surrounding locations with their smartphone and be notified of where they are.

6. MySupport

MySupport is designed to empower people with disability through self directed services by helping them choose, manage and track their own supports. It also makes it easy for workers and people with disability to keep track of upcoming shifts with free text message reminders.

7. InstaAid

InstaAid is an iPad app that is an accessible Nurse Call system that allows for people with neurological disability to ask for help or call a nurse. Has high contrast large buttons accessible to all users.

8. Braci

Braci is a Smart Ear that helps deaf people be alerted to all emergency sounds through their smart phones, tablets or watches.

The CollectAbility Challenge was set by telco AT&T and the New York University ABILITY Lab.


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