13 - 05 - 2012
The "Smart Quran Reader for Sight Impaired" invention of Dr. Awad Al Khalaf from the University of Sharjah (UOS) and Eng. Anas Youssef Boubas from UAE University, who is a UOS graduate, took the first prize at the International Kuwait Prize for the best technical device serving the Holy Quran. The Prize witnessed a global competition of 61 countries.
Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Emir of Kuwait, honored the two inventors for their invention “Smart Quran Reader for Sight Impaired". The ceremony was held in Al Bayan Palace in Kuwait in the presence of the Crown Prince of Kuwait and a number of ministers, ambassadors and members of the National Assembly of Kuwait.
The invention converts the printed text to Braille codes using a smart scanner, automatically transforming the text or saving it in the device. The smart Quran reader for the sight-impaired is a device similar to the iPad in size and shape; however, it does not have a screen and it is replaced by Braille codes, which emboss automatically for reading the desired page. The back of the device scans the text and gives instructions to present Braille codes on the opposite side. The device is characterized by the ability of reading any stored text in its memory with no requirement to scan whenever the user needed. Moreover, it has an audio ability to speak out the written text.
The idea of the device came due to the reason that printing books using Braille codes encounters difficulties of expense and size. Therefore, those who are sight impaired face obstacles in reading due to the unavailability of books printed in Braille codes. Consequently, the idea of the smart reader appeared to enable the sight impaired to read any books printed in normal ink to be read in Braille language. The two inventors registered their innovation in the US patent office.