3-D Printed Storybooks for the Visually Impaired

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by Maru Pabón

Researchers at the University of Colorado, Boulder, have created the Tactile Picture Books Project, a series of 3-D printed books that go beyond the possibilities of braille. Propelled by the increasing accessibility of this technology, the team at Boulder has transformed the classic images of Goodnight Moon and Harold and the Purple Crayon into tactile forms. These 3-D printed figures, which emerge from the page in the shape of objects within the text, are meant to guide visually impaired children through the stories’ landscapes, allowing them to feel the representations they cannot see.

The Tactile Picture Books Project’s mission statement reads: “One day, every household will have a 3D printer to make tactile picture books for children to touch and enjoy at home.” Though there’s a long way to go before that happens, you can learn more about how to contribute to the project here.

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2D graphics in a 3D, tactile way on a scale appropriate for the cognitive abilities and interests of young children — See more at: http://www.colorado.edu/news/releases/2014/06/23/picture-books-visually-impaired-kids-go-3d-thanks-cu-boulder-research-team#sthash.gCCBDO8Q.dpuf

represent 2D graphics in a 3D, tactile way on a scale appropriate for the cognitive abilities and interests of young children — See more at: http://www.colorado.edu/news/releases/2014/06/23/picture-books-visually-impaired-kids-go-3d-thanks-cu-boulder-research-team#sthash.gCCBDO8Q.dpuf

represent 2D graphics in a 3D, tactile way on a scale appropriate for the cognitive abilities and interests of young children — See more at: http://www.colorado.edu/news/releases/2014/06/23/picture-books-visually-impaired-kids-go-3d-thanks-cu-boulder-research-team#sthash.gCCBDO8Q.dpuf

represent 2D graphics in a 3D, tactile way on a scale appropriate for the cognitive abilities and interests of young children — See more at: http://www.colorado.edu/news/releases/2014/06/23/picture-books-visually-impaired-kids-go-3d-thanks-cu-boulder-research-team#sthash.gCCBDO8Q.dpuf

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