A change of plans…

Tuesday I had my first meeting with prof. Duval to talk about what I already had found, my planning and what my tutor José and I concluded for the application. He said that he liked the idea and that it was good work but that he feared that the application does a lot of things and that some aspects of it are maybe more general learning environment and not specifically for people with special needs. The problem is than that at the end of the year everything might work a little bit but nothing really great… That’s why he advised me that I should concentrate on a part of the application, draw it, test, implement, test again and repeating this until I’m really convinced that this is a great application and it would actually help people with a mental disability. Then I could focus on a different part and do the same again.

We started discussing about the for example first part of the application I could make – Facebook for the disabled. I could use the technologies I was already planning to use in it so it is still usable for the learning part of the thesis like Text-to-speech and visualization of the words a student has problems with, clustering similar students,… I should also check some specific specifications that aren’t really measurable but might be interesting to investigate like for example when something isn’t working my brother (who has a mental disability) gets more rapidly upset instead of just relativizing it, how to avoid this?

After talking some more about this prof. Duval mentioned that this could also be expanded to be used by people without a disability for example in the car. Then big clear buttons, pictograms and text-to-speech could also be very handy. This is called access for all like for example the curb ramps on a sidewalk were initially designed for people in a wheelchair but afterwards it was also used by people with a baby trolley, luggage,…

So quite a big change of plans but after thinking about it, it is for the best. Now I can concentrate more on a smaller aspect and try to perfection it as much as I can. Like they say, “Less is more”…

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