Shubham Banerjee, a seventh grader in Santa Clara, California, invented a Lego Mindstorms-based Braille printer called the Braigo. He's declared his intention to release his printer -- which costs about $350, much less than traditional $2000+ Braille printers -- as open source hardware so that it can be improved by a wider developer community.
to WHO reports, there are estimated 285 million visually impaired people
worldwide and 90% of which lives in developing countries. At this moment the
cost of a brail printer is more than $2000 for a basic version, thus for many
millions of people across the world have limited access. This project
uses the Lego Mindstorms EV3 kit costing $349 and some add-ons from Home-depot
costing another $5 to prove that its feasible to make a brail printer for
education purposes and schools that’s much cheaper. The project uses the base
reference model known as Banner Print3r and was redesigned with totally new
software to print letters A-Z. The project is named as BRAIGO v1.0 in short for
Brail with LEGO. There are endless possibilities to add enhancements in software
to make BRAIGO do a lot more. The student wishes to make this project open
source, with the design and software readily available for public consumption
free of charge. Thus giving a new tool in the hands of blind institutions or
even parents with visually impaired children to use this printer at a 80%
savings from commercially available products out there in the market.
Background: Shubham Banerjee was born in Hasselt, Belgium to Indian parents. He moved to San Jose, California when he was 3 years old. Later he moved to Santa Clara, Claifornia and completed his elementary schooling at Don Callejon School. He joined Magnolia Science Academy in Santa Clara in middle school for couple of months , before moving to Champion School in San Jose where is continuing his 7th grade. He continues to reside in Santa Clara, California.