AWARE : ABOUT US
ABOUT SENSIBLE INNOVATIONS
Our goal is to help close the information gap for people who are visually impaired or print challenged when visiting new places, and to drive their curiosity and courage to explore and enjoy their surroundings more independently.
CREATING AN ENVIRONMENT OF EQUALITY THROUGH INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES.
Sensible Innovations was created and is being brought to market by Rasha Said, the parent of a visually impaired child. Rasha created the AWARE concept out of a glaring need for better audio-information technology. She is dedicated to making AWARE a marquee wayfinding brand in the location-based SmartLandmark (iBeacon) services market, with her ultimate goal to create a new paradigm for visually impaired services.
Before founding Sensible Innovations, Rasha was an actuarial and financial analyst with a background in mathematics and computer science. She has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in mathematics from the American University in Cairo and master’s degree (MBA) in finance from the University of Arkansas in Little Rock.
THE INSPIRATION BEHIND AWARE
Sensible Innovations launched an iOS app in 2015 using SmartLandmark (iBeacon) technology — the AWARE Accessible Wayfinding App — to help the visually impaired more fully experience their surroundings and navigate public spaces in real time via voice instruction. The wayfinding app had successful results in a test pilot program at Glenwood High School, a public school in Chatham, Illinois. Sensible Innovations is now building upon that real-world experience by rolling out the product nationwide.
ADULT AMERICANS WITH VISUAL IMPAIRMENTS*
OF 1.3 MILLION LEGALLY BLIND IN THE U.S. CAN READ BRAILLE*
VISUALLY IMPAIRED UNDER THE AGE OF 65**
*BLACKWELL, D.L., LUCAS, J.W., & CLARK, T.C. (2014). SUMMARY HEALTH STATISTICS FOR U.S. ADULTS: NATIONAL HEALTH INTERVIEW SURVEY, 2012. NATIONAL CENTER FOR HEALTH STATISTICS. VITAL HEALTH STAT 10(260). **ASSOCIATED PRESS 3/26/09.
ACCESSIBLE WAYFINDING SOLUTIONS
Location-enabled wayfinding phones and tracking technologies are evolving dramatically and opening the market to new possibilities using geo-based data in real time for applications beyond mapping. Now the ability to track personal items, a car, or even a child or elderly adult are realities. Venues for the applications are nearly endless — retail, commercial, connected home, and personal tracking.
SmartLandmarks (iBeacons) are the foundation for wearables and location-based services. These low-powered transmission devices use Bluetooth low energy (BLE) technology. As a new SmartLandmark services developer, Sensible Innovations has created a one-of-a-kind platform for the underserved market of accessible wayfinding solutions, beginning with services for the visually impaired.
EXPERIENCE ALL OF LIFE
The AWARE platform and Accessible Wayfinding mobile app creates a new generation of auditory-information products and services providing the visually impaired as well as general consumers with audio-location information in city centers, bus stops, stores, museums, parks, and nearly anywhere that audio can help navigate and inform the user of his or her surroundings.
Sensible Innovations is working with iBeacon manufacturers to integrate the technology with the AWARE mobile app so anyone with a smartphone can download and begin receiving audio notifications. Early adopters for the AWARE app are anticipated to be university campuses and public-transportation agencies,
which will, for example, install SmartLandmarks (iBeacons) at bus stops, on all buses, at terminals, and transfer stations.
As an individual using the AWARE app nears a bus stop, for example, he or she will be alerted to bus schedule and route information, guided onto the bus, and then alerted as the bus approaches each stop. Similarly, train stations and airports will be outfitted with beacons that communicate a variety of information to consumers. In city centers, beacons will give direction to users, alert them to the presence of city buildings, offer guided tours of museums, and even advertise specials and location-aware ads for retail stores or restaurants.
For the visually impaired, AWARE is liberating — it is the freedom to experience life to the fullest, stepping out with confidence to explore and to engage.