In this “proof-of-product” development project, SARDI staff are refining their Virtual Office Space (VOS) prototype, which combines two cutting-edge technologies, the Oculus Quest 2 and Bigscreen®, to meet the individualized needs of persons with albinism in order to provide them with a full view of the desktop screen inside of a virtual environment where the user has full ability to customize their screen and surroundings. This accessibility tool will be aimed at enabling individuals with low vision who might not otherwise be able to obtain employment in lucrative computer and IT occupations. The target population for this VOS proof-of-product project includes individuals with low vision with a particular emphasis on individuals with albinism (who tend to have multiple visual impairments). In this study, we are conducting “proof-of-product” testing with 20 individuals.
The goal is to demonstrate that VOS can dramatically improve computer screen viewing by individuals with albinism We expect that VOS will successfully meet the screen-viewing needs of any individual with low vision due to reduced visual acuity, color blindness, light sensitivity, nystagmus, or strabismus. We believe that VOS will address the visual needs of most individuals with low vision, not just individuals with albinism. The aim of this VOS proof-of-product project is to develop and evaluate a fully-integrated, high-resolution virtual desktop that can be accessed online from home or the workplace and is designed to improve employment opportunities for individuals with low vision. This proposed development project addresses the Employment Domain established for this grant opportunity by developing technology to improve employment outcomes for individuals with low vision.
Josephine Wilson, D.D.S., Ph.D.