Benefits of Artificial Intelligence for People with Disabilities
Benefits of Artificial Intelligence for People with Disabilities
As early predicted, Artificial Intelligence (AI) has brought significant change in the engineering industry, IT, big data, and other tech-related fields and applications. As Artificial Intelligence continues to advance, it will soon be applicable in the day-to-day activities of humans. Artificial Intelligence is considered machine intelligence or cognitive computing. It can learn, understand, and then apply the knowledge acquired to complete a particular task or achieve a specific goal. The learning process of AI is similar to that of humans and animals (Castrounis, 2020). However, instead of employing five senses for information gathering around its environment and the brain’s use for processes as for humans and animals, Artificial Intelligence uses training and optimization model for data gathering and processing. The data gathered and processed by the AI updates and improves based on the configuration applied.
The advancement of AI and its application has been fundamental in assisting people with disabilities, with each advancement proving to be more inclusive. AI has so far made more significant advancements in health care and medical technology, creating benefits for people with disabilities towards reaching independence in terms of communication, accessing things, and leaving independent lives. Artificial Intelligence has already proved beneficial in helping individuals with disabilities gain more agency in their lives through advancements such as language recognition software, smart home technologies, and self-driving cars (Rue, 2019). This paper reviews some of the benefits Artificial Intelligence provides for people with disabilities focusing on machine learning, neural networks, computer vision, and natural language.
Machine learning is one of the successful models of Artificial Intelligence. The machine learning model involves computerized training that enables the computer system to solve problems without a human’s help. The Machine learning systems learn by being trained on extensive collections of data and translations, such as being provided with training examples with each having specified input and desired output associated with the input. Machine Learning has seen been associated with various befits for people with disabilities.
Some of the benefits of machine learning include helping individuals with cognitive disabilities, including memory, reasoning, executive function, attention, literacy, and learning. The cognitive disabilities vary among individuals’ operations, creating differences that mainly depend on the environmental sensitivity and the activities individuals are supposed to conduct or engage in. Machine learning has proved beneficial in modifying the environment to enable people with different cognitive disabilities to gain more ability to live independently. An example of the benefit of machine learning in cognitive disabilities is a person-environment fit model that has proved significant for people with intellectual disabilities. A person’s limitations characterize intellectual disability in terms of intellectual functioning and adaptive behavior. Individuals with intellectual disabilities highly depend on another person’s support to participate in operations conducted with typical human functioning (Wehmeyer & Thompson, 2016). However, with machine learning, person-environment fit systems have helped an individual with an intellectual disability. For instance, a reminder system in the environment of a person with a cognitive disability can help him remember certain activities, such as taking medication or keeping an appointment.
Learning machine has also proved beneficial in helping an individual with limited literacy skills by making text easier to understand. Initially, the Occupational Therapy Services involved the physician engage treatment through prescription towards improving individual with disabilities in terms of functioning abilities to sensory, adaptive behavior, self-help, emotional development, and other dysfunctional states. However, the approach has not been efficient, considering the resource input that has to be consumed. Machine learning’s natural language processing technologies have been beneficial in supporting Occupational Therapy Services (Lewis, 2018). Some of the tools based on machine learning that have been utilized as content providers in helping people with disabilities include the Medicaid Reference Desk project, which automatically produces a more comprehensible text version. Machine learning is also utilized by remote caregivers to monitor individuals with a disability, including the patient’s living space, watching the sign of distress or danger, and providing instructions for certain activities.
Neural networks are another model of Artificial Intelligence-based on computational algorithms. Neural networks have the ability to extract meaning from complex data by detecting and establishing trends and patterns that may be too convoluted for other computer techniques or the human brain. The training of neural networks involved two approaches that include supervised learning, whereby the network is fed with deride input and outputs. The second training approached is unsupervised learning, where the neural network is not provided humanitarian assistance in making sense of inputs. The most significant aspect of neural networks is that they have the ability to learn on their own once they develop the pattern or trend through an algorithm that allows them to emulate the human brain (Smartsheet, 2020). Neural networks have proved to be beneficial for humans with disabilities through its applicability.
One of the main benefits of neural networks for people with disabilities is its application in smart home design. The smart home is designed to disable the disability by creating an independent and autonomic environment to attain features such as movement, access, and control. The inclusion of neural networks in smart home design is based on creating a network connection to different elements in the home that are essential in helping a disabled person. One of the main features of neural networks is automation. When applied in smart homes, automation enables a disabled person to monitor and control all devices in the house. Disable individuals may need help in terms of security. However, with neural networks, they gain the advantage of ensuring their security independently. Neural networks can be configured to maintain house security, including main doors and windows. Other technologies that can be connected to neural networks for security purposes in a household of a disabled person include motion sensors, smart cameras, smart fire alarm, and connectivity to a dedicated police department.
Neural networks also support the health care and safety of disabled individuals inside a house environment. For instance, neural network-based technologies, such as fall detection, oxygen sensors, humidity sensors, and monitoring systems can be deployed in helping a disabled person in terms of providing constant monitoring of the persons’ daily activities for events such as eating and movement (Hussein et al., 2014). The other benefit that neutral networks provide people with disabilities is monitoring their medical conditions and scheduling medical alerts or alerting them when medication is necessary. Neural networks create a suitable interaction process for people with specific disabilities enabling them to communicate with other individuals and their environment without the disability holding them back. For instance, an alight mobile interface with neural network capabilities may suit a person with a physical disability. Another example of neutral networks technology is the voice recognition software, which beneficial as an interface of communication for a blind person or one that does not have hands.
Computer vision is another model of Artificial Intelligence that has proved to be beneficial for people with disabilities. Computer vision specifically helped an individual with vision and blindness impairment. Artificial Intelligence has made tremendous improvements in computer vision by enabling computer vision to advance its ability of image recognition, detection of objects, and understanding images (Wang & Wong, 2019). Some of the benefits of computer vision for individuals with vision impairment and blindness include overcoming social barriers in their daily lives. The assistive technologies with computer vision support individuals with a disability in overcoming environmental barriers, such as movement and communicating with other people.
The advancement in computer vision has seen its inclusion in communicating devices such as smartphones, allowing visually impaired people to access assistive technologies and gain the autonomy of when or how to access information. For instance, computer vision applications such as SeeingAI and Lookout, now exist in smartphones, provide various assistive functions to users through auditory cues that enable the application to identify scenes, read a short text, recognize faces, and read documents and currency for people with disability (Wang & Wong, 2019). Another benefit of computer vision is providing navigation assistance to people with visual impairment. Computer vision’ navigation assistance systems utilize cameras and sensors to provide directions enable one to navigate in both outdoor and indoor environments with less or without human assistance. Computer vision is also being applied in self-driven cars, which will enable people with disabilities to use automation independently.
Natural language is a model of Artificial Intelligence that, when applied in computer systems, gains the ability to read, understand, and interpret human language. Natural language analyzes human language by measuring the sentiments and determining the essential parts. The recent advancement in natural language has resulted in its application various, including assisting people with disabilities. Various technologies that use natural language have been developed to assist people with disabilities. For instance, a prototype system known as ESCAS help the visually handicapped in writing and reading documents by probing and gathering information in the environment (Chelin at al., 2006). The other benefits of natural language systems include helping people with the disability determine the relevance of documents without reading the document. They also assist in information access for specific topics or themes in a faster way. The natural language also frees one from conducting tedious searches and helping the vision-impaired individual in reading.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has brought significant change in the way people with disabilities operate and interact in the environment. AI’s ability to learn, understand, and apply the knowledge in completing tasks or archiving tasks has been utilized in systems and applications in creating means of assisting people with disabilities. The different models of AI covered in this paper offer different benefits for people with disabilities. The models’ main aim is to ensure individuals with disabilities gain more agency in their lives and reach independence in terms of communicating, accessing things, movement, and living independently.
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