Today in APIs: Third Eye Brings Gift of Vision to Google Glass

Third Eye app for the visually impaired translates what you can't see into words you can hear. Hack the Gender Gap bicoastal hackathon is focused on wearables, promises possibilities for women in tech. Plus: Sniper Elite 3 now supports Mantle, and Microsoft patents tailored web services.

Third Eye Creates Audio Descriptions of Objects

Three freshmen may have just blown the doors off the hinges of computer vision at the PennApps X hackathon. Ben Sandler, Joe Cappadona and Rajat Bhageria, founders of Third Eye, have created a Google Glass app for the visually impaired that identifies what is in front of you and says what it is. The example offered is someone getting change after a purchase: the system can recognize a dollar bill and announce it.

Third Eye graphic

As David Ongchoco writing at Technically Philly reports, getting off the ground was rough:

Bhageria, Cappadona and Sandler weren’t initially part of the same team. However, a few hours before the competition started, Bhageria and Cappadona’s team members backed out, so they were looking for more team members. This led to them wandering around and running into Sandler who wanted to work on a hack for the Google Glass. Remembering the struggles that his grandfather faced as a blind man, Cappadona was hit with an app idea they could work on — an app that would allow Google Glass to recognize whatever was in front of it.

Then it took grinding hours to actually get Google Glass to use APIs that would allow it to recognize what was in front of the user and declare it. Now, they have open-sourced the code and look toward improving it.

Wearables Could Benefit Women in Tech at Hackathon

Reed College of Media at West Virginia University will hold a hackathon October 24-26 focused on women-founded start ups and wearables. The event will kick off with a panel discussion hosted by Google at its headquarters in Mountain View, California and be live-streamed to the east coast event. As Daniela Velázquez reports in Fast Company, being a woman entrepreneur in the wearable space has its advantages:

The hope centers around a new wave of women-led companies. At the beginning of any emerging market, there’s an opportunity to sow the seeds of influence, says Dana Coester, creative director of the Reed College of Media Innovation Center at West Virginia University. Experts and executives agree the opportunity is particularly big with wearables. “In the hard sciences it’s rarer to see a female founder, but in the smaller, wearable space you see more female founders,” says Laura Michelle Berman, who co-created Melon, a headband that monitors brainwaves through electrical activity.

This aptly-timed event comes on the heels of embarrassing revelations at Apple, whose fitness smart watch does almost everything except track menstrual cycles.

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Be sure to read the next Hacking article: to Host $1 Million Hackathon at Dreamforce 2014