Online Sign Language Interpretor

From Bangkok Post: A sign of the times

Another benefit of the Internet, especially high speed connection that makes Deaf people can not only just type or write, but thay can also talk.

“Located at Ratsuda College, the online sign language interpreting room is equipped with five stations where interpreters sit in front of computer monitors and web cameras.

They are joined by deaf students, who sit together with the interpreter to convey sign language. The interpreter will then talk to the remote party to convey the message.”

The web cameras can display everyone’s faces and actions so that the communication is accompanied by visual cues.

One of the project’s goals is to allow parents who are away from their deaf children to see and interact with their kids, according to Dr Jitprapa Sri-on, a former director of the college and head of the Sign Language Interpreting Online project.

She noted that the technology could also help solve the problem of insufficient numbers of sign language interpreters. There were fewer than 100 sign language interpreters in Thailand today and they could not serve adequately the number of deaf people.

Based on a survey in 2002, the total number of deaf people here was 200,000 out of an overall figure of one million people with disabilities.

[See also Ratsuda College website]

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