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Device for the Color Blind?

06/28/2009 1:45 PM

I am not an engineer, but have a electronic background. I am colour blind and have been working for 15 years for a major telecommunications company. I am looking for a simple device or information on the best way to make one. It can be a basic colour identifier such as red,green, and amber. I need this to be small, pocket or pen size.

I just need to look at a led and tell for sure that it is red,green, or amber.

Any help you can and recommendations would be of great interest and appreciated.

My e-mail is tr_c98@yahoo.com.

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#1

Re: Colour Blind aid

06/28/2009 2:02 PM
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#2
In reply to #1

Re: Colour Blind aid

06/28/2009 2:38 PM

Thank you I have bookmarked this sight. It is the only good info I have found.

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#7
In reply to #2

Re: Colour Blind aid

06/29/2009 7:47 AM

glad to help

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#4
In reply to #1

Re: Colour Blind aid

06/29/2009 2:41 AM

That covers it very well. I assume you have charts - if not say so and I will send some which I downloaded.

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#10
In reply to #1

Re: Colour Blind aid

06/29/2009 11:36 AM

Among the first aids mentioned in the article at the link were eye glasses with filters along top or bottom of lens. Since you want a small, compact, hand-held device; how about a pencil (fat) sized optical detector and a small wheel with three filters. As you rotate each filter into place, it will pass or block the relevant spectrum. A pass will activate the optical sensor and in turn trigger an indicator. Your choice of a tone, beep or a known LED. Light on = selected filter matches color.

This is assuming the eye glasses idea itself is not acceptable.

Not especially automatic or elegant but as a first pass and simple to construct it should work. I have one of the cheap $4.95 lights that imitate a military version and it comes with filter disks. Begin with such a device and replace the light bulb with a light sensor. The flashlight already has a battery holder. With your electronics back ground you should be able to devise a sensor circuit and piezo electric beper that fits inside.

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#24
In reply to #10

Re: Colour Blind aid

07/08/2009 12:35 AM

How about a tube, just big enough to fit over the end of a pencil and/or with a pocket clip and a couple filters in the end, one red, one green, each with a letter shaped mask over it. You slip it off the pencil and slip it over the LED and if you see an R then its red, if you see a G then its green and if you see both R and G then it's yellow. (or perhaps white)

Of course this is only useful for looking at LEDs, but that's what you mentioned.

Gordie.

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#3

Re: Colour Blind aid

06/28/2009 11:31 PM

Years ago (about 40), the Artificial Intelligence Lab at Stanford had a robot that could determine colors by interposing a sequence of various wavelength filters between the object and the viewing lens. That capability should be micromized and automated now.

Your local paint store has a "computer" for determining pigment composition of a color sample. It seems plausible that one of these devices modified would serve your need.

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#5

Re: Colour Blind aid

06/29/2009 3:33 AM

Hi,

15 years ago I saw in Budapest, Hungary results of research on color blindness.

The result was a specialised colored spectacle, not really dramatically different in coloring of the glasses of the right side compared to the left side.

This was done together with a local optical company. May be you find some more info at Budapest Technical? University.

RHABE

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#6
In reply to #5

Re: Colour Blind aid

06/29/2009 7:42 AM

Thanks to all of you who have replied..

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#8

Re: Colour Blind aid

06/29/2009 9:41 AM

I had the following idea:

F1: yellow filter

M1: semi-transparent mirror

M2: mirror

F2: red filter

When the input light is yellow (like in the picture) we have X=A/2 (because only the red component of the yellow light passes through the F2).

When the input light is red we have X=A

When the input light is green we have X=0 (no light)

So, after this, you have just to compare the two outputs A and X. By using photocells as light detectors and by using comparators with appropriate thresholds (variable thresholds controlled by A) you can distinguish between these three different states (Y or R or G input light).

[Btw, if the input light is blue then A=0 (i.e. no light even at A outpout).]

I know that it's difficult to implement this idea but I mentioned it just for fun.

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#23
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Re: Colour Blind aid

07/08/2009 12:21 AM

Or you could use Dichroic mirrors. They reflect one colour and pass its complementary colour. They are available in the six basic pairs. ie. c/r, m/g, y/b and r/c, g/m, b/y. Or you could use one Dichroic mirror and one filter.

Gordie

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#25
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Re: Colour Blind aid

07/08/2009 4:07 AM

Thanks for the info Gordie. Although, I think that there is no need for dichroic mirrors in this. Just a red filter is enough to get the output X.

A semi transparent mirror (M1) is necessary because you don't know the level of the input light so you need a "reference output" (i.e. output A). In this way you make variable thresholds according to this output A (hence according to the level of the input light). So, the comparator circuit (which "checks" the output X) will make the distinction between the three states of colour, successfully, regardless of the level of the input light.

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#9

Re: Colour Blind aid

06/29/2009 9:54 AM

Thomasrc 98,

I appreciate your zeal and initiatives to help the colour blind community. On going through the stories of inventors, recentlyI happened to read the story of BRAILEY and his life time struggle to make the blind read, and the Royal Society of G.B had been instrumental in making his method to a workable scope. Likewise I wish your mission get good success. Mean while is your problem being chronic or developed recently. It is found that subjection to noise and noisy work atmospheres makes one colour blind. Do you have such evidences,so that you can avoid worsening of the situation?

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#21
In reply to #9

Re: Colour Blind aid

07/07/2009 11:36 PM

I thought colour blindness was caused by a genetic defect...

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#11

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

06/29/2009 7:51 PM

Here's another idea just for "fun". Get a trained chimpanzee that signs! They exist.

http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2003986892_washoe01m.html

Also check this out

http://blog.modernmechanix.com/mags/qf/c/ModernMechanix/9-1929/med_chimp_driver.jpg

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#12
In reply to #11

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

06/29/2009 8:10 PM

that guy is just your average middle aged parent with three teenaged children.... channelling his inner taxi driver. his children just treat him like a chimp.. doesn't mean he's stupid.

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#13

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

06/29/2009 9:51 PM

G'day,

I'm an Electronics Technician/Two Way Radio Techie of some 30 years standing, I'm also Totally colour blind. No not Monochromatic Coluor Blind , I have difficulty defining certain colours. like green/brown. Traffic lights are no problem as they are not pure Red, Amber, Green.

I have found the best solution is a biological one, found in most places. When faced with confusing colour issues, ask a woman. Any woman will do, the incidence of colour blindness in women is like 1 in 40,000 as against 1 in 10 for men.

The other thing that helps me when I'm running Cat cable is a miner style LED headlamp with a red light. It allows me to distinguish the brown wire from the green wire as under the red light, the green wire is now black the brown wire remains brown.

But having a woman handy is ideal for picking out colours on components like resistors especially where the background colour of the component bleeds through the colour bands or the shades of the pigment on the bands is a little suspect.

The woman needs no technical skills nor understand what its for, fortunately they come inately equipped for the job. No training needed just a little courtesy.

Cheers

Perry

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#14
In reply to #13

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

06/29/2009 10:44 PM

I knew they had to have a use somewhere....

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#15
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Re: Device for the Color Blind?

06/29/2009 11:16 PM

Chris you gotta get out more.

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#16
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Re: Device for the Color Blind?

06/29/2009 11:34 PM

doh.... thats true..

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#22
In reply to #13

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

07/08/2009 12:08 AM

I heard recently that women have better red vision than men.

To be specific 2/3 of women have better red vision than any man.

The reason being that there are three different red sensitive proteins. They each pick up a different wavelength of red light. They are coded on the x chromosome. Each man has 1 x chromosome (and one y) and therefore a 1/3 chance of getting each colour sensitivity. Women have 2 x chromosomes and therefore 2 chances for each and therefore a 2/3 chance of getting 2 different ones. So 2/3 of women have 4 colour perception. Better for telling the difference between poisonous/edible berries with slightly different shades of red. (for example)

It also explains why men and women have so many arguments about whether 2 paint chips are the same colour or not. Men, if she says they're different, she's probably right! (of course it could just be that she cares whether they're different or not)

Gordie.

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#17

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

06/30/2009 5:18 AM

Just last night i saw a USB connected microscope that goes to 200x. Maybe if you used that to capture an image and then looked at that image with Adobe Photoshop, using the edit function you could get a graphic of its chroma components. I.E. it will graphicaly display its R.G.B. strengths.

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#18

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

06/30/2009 2:31 PM

At one point in my life I wore an X-Chrome lense. This is a deep red contact lense which is worn on one eye only. It worked well enough until I was barred from entering certain work areas because of the contact lense. It seemed that there was fear that the lense would become welded to my eye if I were exposed to a flash fire.

I finally gave up using it when I lost the second one in a year.

You can read a little about the current version here: http://www.seesuccess.com/all_types_of_contact_lenses.htm

I am so called Red/Green color blind and I detest those cussed color changing LEDS and indicators made from them. I refused to participate in testing certain equipment one of my employers made because of this problem. No, they would not assign me a female helper. I asked!

Have FUN!
TT3

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#28
In reply to #18

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

08/11/2009 6:03 PM

Hi Turbotroll3, I checked on these X-Chrome lenses, probably about 20? years ago, and the prices were ridiculously high for average people. 1.) Can you give me an estimate on the current prices for these please? 2.) Are they available in the old-fashioned hard lens yet? 3.) Can the non-X-Chrome lens have a tint as well, so the user doesn't look like such a freak with one real dark eye? 4.) What do I need to do/have to order one of these lenses. Thanks so much in advance for your time on this matter! Sincerely, Don dpd4321 [at] yahoo [dot] com ==========

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#19

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

06/30/2009 4:16 PM

I have a different solution. I have a tint line at the top edge of the lenses on my glasses. I use brown but red, blue, yellow or green will work depending on your type of colorblindness. Just tilt your head up and down a few times and you can pick out any color. it just takes practice and a reference to learn the differences. I used to use yellow but in a semiconductor fab the overhead lights can be yellow and that messed me up. Yellow does not differentiate brown and purple for me. I only don't see green well. Most People never notice a tint line at the top of a lense as anything other than suppose to be there. Of course now that I have trifocal lenses I have to hold it at arms length under a magnifying lense.

I used to carry two mini mag lights, one with a yellow lense for illuminating wire color codes inside equipment with poor lighting. I only had problems telling brown and purple with this method. All of the previous is while in a yellow overhead light situation. Since the two colors are not common together I seldom had to get help.

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#29
In reply to #19

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

08/12/2009 2:48 AM

Hi silvCrow, How or where are we able to get this brown tint line on our glasses? I don't think the big optical chains like, RxOptical, Perle Vision, Walmart, Sears, would do something like that, would they? Suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks, Don dpd4321 [at] yahoo [dot] com ========================

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#30
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Re: Device for the Color Blind?

08/12/2009 11:16 AM

Mine were special order from my eye doctor. It cost extra but I don't remember how much.

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#20

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

07/01/2009 3:25 AM

Contact the Royal National Institute for the Blind. A device such as this is available to those who have no sight at all for the purpose of carrying out electrical wiring (yes, this is a serious suggestion - a gentleman located in Colchester in England is using such a thing to wire-up his model railway!).

It is highly inadvisable to post an e-mail address in an international forum. E-mail addresses are easily harvested by spambots. They quickly bombard it with advertisements for non-prescription pharmaceuticals, scam requests to update on-line banking details, links to matters of an intimate nature and scams purporting to be about getting large sums of money out of Nigeria, rendering the address practically useless.

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#26

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

07/08/2009 9:26 AM

I just want to update my thanks too all. I have gotten some interesting and valuable information. I have a good background on what causes color blindness as that info is easily obtained. I am particularly interested in the electronic identification as suggested by some of the repliers. All I need is too identify red, green and amber. Most equipment these days use multi colored LED to display alarm status.. I have trouble distinguishing these colors from one another.

Again many thanks to all of you who have taken the time to replay.

Thomasrc98

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#27

Re: Device for the Color Blind?

07/09/2009 4:52 AM

Just today my wife bought an 'Interactive World Globe' made by LEAPFROG. It is a teaching toy for kids. It has a pen and a globe marked with the different countries being in different colours. As an aside; there are only five colours, red orange yellow and green. I think it can tell which quarter of the globe is facing you and which hemisphere you are pointing to as there are several countries with the same colour.

Back to the point. The point of the pen detects colour and 'speaks' to you. ( the name of the country ). Perhaps you could contact the toymaker with the idea of making a pocket sized pen that detects colour and says what it is.

their website is www.leapfrog.com

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