16-year-old discovers way to help ALS patients communicate
Alixandra Caole Vila (The Philippine Star) - September 13, 2014 - 1:55pm

MANILA, Philippines – Sixteen-year-old Indian student may have found a way to make communication possible for people with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).

With the massive videos of people taking up the Ice Bucket Challenge on the Internet, we all should know by now that  ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that causes muscle weakness, paralysis, and ultimately, respiratory failure. All of these make it impossible for the person who has this disease to talk and communicate.

RELATED: FACTS: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) in numbers

Every 90 minutes, someone is diagnosed with ALS. Two out of 100,000 people have ALS. Luckily, with the help of technology and Arsh Shah Dilbagi’s bright mind, lending help to people with ALS and all those with communication disability could be possible.

By converting human breath into words, Arsh Shah Dilbagi could transform the lives of many. His invention, according to the YouTube description is called TALK.

TALK is an Augmentative and Alternative Communication Device (AAC) which enables people with Developmental-Disabilities (DD) like Locked-In Syndrome, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis etc. and even Mutes to communicate in normal form of speech. It is a patent-pending innovative technology which using the variations in person's breath help him either dictate letters which are further combined and synthesised as sentences or speak-out specific commands/phrases depending on the mode selected. Current AAC devices cost thousands of dollars but TALK can be made accessible under a hundred US dollars and it also increases the speaking rate by up to 300%.

Because of this invention,  Arsh Shah Dilbagi earned a spot as one of 18 finalists in the 2014 Google Science Fair.

Watch the video for more information about the device:

YouTube (Im Robo)

ALS AMYOTROPHIC LATERAL SCLEROSIS ARSH SHAH DILBAGI AUGMENTATIVE AND ALTERNATIVE COMMUNICATION DEVICE DEVELOPMENTAL-DISABILITIES GOOGLE SCIENCE FAIR ICE BUCKET CHALLENGE IM ROBO LOCKED-IN SYNDROME PEOPLE
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