Help the deaf to listen and talk!

#1
Hi,
I'm an android developer and I recently published a new app for android useful for the deaf.

It's nane is 'Deaf Help', and you can download and install it here:
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=help.deaf.com.deafhelp

Deaf Help is divided into two parts:

- Listen (Speech to Text): help the deaf to listen, the app listens and writes in real time what is recorded by the microphone, with the possibility to copy the recognized text or to delete it.

- Speak (Text to Speech): the deaf here can write, using the keyboard, and pressing the 'SPEAK' button DeafHelp will speak for the deaf.

The app is very simple and designed to help the deaf in everyday life.
It supports over 20 languages!

The app is under development, so it may have bugs.
For questions and report write to: stefano.albano.sa@gmail.com
 

Valorrian

Active Member
#3
Why does your brother hate the speech to txt app? I recently lost my hearing and thought it might be a good app to use when I need to communicate with hearing people?
 

Lysander

Well-Known Member
#4
Why does your brother hate the speech to txt app? I recently lost my hearing and thought it might be a good app to use when I need to communicate with hearing people?
The people I've known who use them say it gives obvious preference to the hearing people tho express their ideas. So, hearing people can easily talk into the device. And they quickly turn it into text. The deaf person had to type it out. This is slow and annoying. So the modality gives preference to the hearing person because it aids them more.

Also, for many deaf who were born deaf, it forces them to try to communicate in the language they may not be best add expressing themselves in.

And it encourages hearing people to not learn ASL. Why should I bother learning to sign when I have this simple tool that clearly favors my method of communication over the deaf person's. So it eventually puts all deaf at a greater disadvantage.

There are more reasons, but I'm to lazy to keep typing them out.
 

Jane B.

Well-Known Member
#5
I grewup unalaterally deaf and always oral. So. . . I actually prefer to speak and thus would not be slowed down by typing. But I currently have a lot of trouble understanding what many say. Thus, I have been looking for awhile and trying to decide what would be the best thing to try on a smartphone running Android.
 

Valorrian

Active Member
#6
I haven't had any interaction with someone outside of my family since I lost my hearing. I am scared to go out. I don't want to look deaf and dumb. That is a big fear of mine. I can see how it would be easier for a hearing person to just talk into the app. What about texting apps? Does your brother use those back and forth? I am just learning that there is a big difference between new deaf and deaf from birth. I just thought deaf was deaf. I am a bit overwhelmed to be honest.

I don't sign and my lipreading skills stink. I didn't think of the long term use of the app. I was only thinking about using it like if I was out and someone at the store or a restaurant would ask me something and then they could just talk into the app and I could answer with my voice. I use a speech to text app with my family and it works. My family did take sign classes but I was too angry and depressed to even consider it when I first lost my hearing.
 

Lysander

Well-Known Member
#7
This does seem to be a tool for people who are late deafened with good oral skills. There are also apps like this they already exist. Ava. Connect. There are others as well.
 

Valorrian

Active Member
#10
Connect is the app I have been using. What are some of the others? I just downloaded Ava to check it out. I'm not sure I get the reason behind deaf people not liking apps like this. Sure, it is easier for hearing people to talk into the phone but they don't have a hearing problem or aren't deaf. I am and need the app. They already have the advantage even if there was no app they are hearing, I am not. It's nice enough that people will even use the app with me if need be. I haven't used it but with my family. So, I'm hoping if and when I do need to use it they won't mind too much. Why would anyone think this is negative? I'm new to this "world of hearing loss/deafness" and am just trying to learn and understand.

What do deaf people do when they go out and a hearing person talks to them if they don't have an app? The hearing person doesn't know sign. Do they just point to their ear and shake their head no? So they cut off communication totally? There are always going to be times when deaf people need to communicate with hearing people. However it is not always that a hearing person needs to communicate with deaf. That's just the way the world is. It is very overwhelming navigating this life style change. I feel like I'm lost and don't know how to communicate any more. That is very depressing.
 
#11
What about writing back and forth? That would be my first choice if I had to ask something brief and couldn’t make out the reply.

I used to be hearing, but I still don’t get why some people are so focused on that communication has to be speech. When my hearing started to become insufficient, I automatically gravitated towards the visual. Asking for e-mails instead of phone calls, pointing and using body language to emphasize things or to help understanding. I love learning sign language and find it efficient and fun, and use interpreters when needed.

A speech-to-text app would only work in a quiet environment with a patient person, so I find writing more convenient in that context.

The major problem for me is not random people in the town, but social contexts like dinners, coffee breaks, and small talk. Usually speech-to-text apps wouldn’t be good enough to help participating in those scenarios due to background noise. Before I started using interpreters, I actually brought pen and paper to a Christmas party I knew was going to be noisy. People didn’t mind, and it actually ended with my colleagues borrowing the notepad to communicate with each other, since it was too loud even for them to hear.

I’m not sure if we have different preferences, and some people are maybe very aural, which makes it hard to accept alternatives to speech. Nonetheless, for me it not important to use speech. Yes, it’s extremely convenient if I can hear, and it is ubiquitous, but I like sign language as an alternative in setting where people do sign or if there is an interpreter available. For other situations, I kind of accept writing, lip-reading and body language or similar.

Usually, it’s not hard to get important information in text format. People understand you need it, and the issue is rather social exclusion.
 

DeafDucky

Well-Known Member
#16
I feel like the "right term" for soooo many things is taken toooo far. We know it is referring to the same thing. I am thinking of not just this example with "oral skills".
I can see why some people don't like the term "oral"... it just feels so negative considering the history of deaf education... I know I always say "I grew up oral" but shudder every time I do it and wonder if there's a better way to say that. But fleeting as I don't mention it that often except maybe on deaf boards *coughADcough*. Kind of makes me think more now though.

I don't thing soooo many things are taken toooo far. English- and every other language is a living language (except Latin..and my Latin teacher used to always say "LATIN IS NOT DEAD!!!").. it evolves.. words change in meaning, words are created. Nothing wrong with that at all.

Back to the topic... @Lysander meant well I agree... it's that "oral skills" is so ingrained in society... and created by hearing people. Speaking skills.. hmm... makes better sense and more specific- Oral means mouth.. but what are we doing with the mouth...

Meh.

oh yes... I tried AVA... wasn't thrilled with it.... for optimal use the way AVA works is getting others in your group to download the app, have it on and their phone in front of them... somewhat better speech to text mode that way. No way I can do that with family. The parents and auntie are not of the tech generation... and wouldn't bother with apps galore.
The other one I've used is TextHear Personal Hearing Assistant (that PHA part is kind of dumb)... it's not too bad at all but does not do well with groups- even a smallish group of 5-9 people. That's because the mic on the phone is not strong enough to catch something said from across the table or in a noisier environment. It does give hilarious speech to text at times though.
As for the other way around... yes typing takes a while.. I almost never do that but have done it in a pinch either having the hearing person do the typing and I respond in voice (my "beautiful voice" according to a relative) or we both type. Writing with pen and paper is faster- or using a "Boogie Board" - a bit like an electronic notepad (think etch a sketch with a pen lol).
 

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