Smart Mouthware: Control Phone or Computer Using Tongue
Published: 2020-08-02 - Updated: 2022-06-21
Author: JJ Moritz, President, Sapien LLC | Contact: sapienllc.com
Peer-Reviewed Publication: N/A
Library of Related Papers: Assistive Technology Publications
Synopsis: Smart Mouthware Computer Mouse is a touchpad built into an orthodontic retainer that allows users to move the cursor by moving their tongue across the roof of the mouth. Colin was frustrated with the head-tracking mouse he uses because he had to perform extra actions every time he wanted to right-click or scroll. Clicking is performed by flattening the tongue against the roof of the mouth, and scrolling is performed by rapidly flicking the tongue across the pad in the desired direction of the scroll.
- Tongue Drive System (TDS)
- A Tongue Drive System (TDS) is a tongue-operated, unobtrusive, minimally invasive, wireless assistive technology (AT) that can enable people with severe disabilities to control different devices using their tongues. TDS can translate specific tongue movements into user-defined commands by detecting the position of a small permanent magnetic tracer attached to the user's tongue.
Fort Collins startup builds retainer to control your computer and phone. JJ Moritz and Matt Schultz have created an orthodontic retainer that allows a user to control their phone or computer with their tongue.
Sapien LLC makes assistive technology and neuroscience research tools and is based in Fort Collins, CO. Founded in 2014 by Dr. John Williams and JJ Moritz, the company aims to create products that enable and empower people.
(Article continues below image.)(Continued...)
The engineers began working full-time on this project in November 2019 and are collaborating with Colin Heffern, a landscape architect with quadriplegia and staff at Craig Hospital, to test the first set of prototypes. They aim to develop a computer mouse for people with disabilities that is as fast as a hand-operated mouse.
"Most mouse options for people who are disabled are slow in one way or another. Colin was frustrated with the head-tracking mouse he used because he had to perform different actions every time he wanted to right-click or scroll. We've solved that problem," states JJ Moritz.
The Smart Mouthware™ Computer Mouse they have developed is a touchpad built into the roof of an orthodontic retainer that allows the users to move the cursor by moving their tongue across the roof of their mouth. Clicking (left, right-click, and click-drag) is performed by flattening the tongue against the roof of the mouth, and scrolling is performed by rapidly flicking the tongue across the pad in the desired direction of the scroll.
"It allows full functionality of the mouse, which seems to be pretty slick," states Colin in a YouTube review of the current prototype.
In that video, Colin explains some improvements that will need to be in the final product but says that the current prototype does allow him to click and perform actions like right-right-clicking easily. He is also excited to have one piece of technology to control his computer and phone.
JJ and Matt funded the project for several months, then launched a crowdfunding campaign in February. JJ Moritz states that they chose to crowdfund (as opposed to taking loans or investments) to keep the final product cost down.
"Insurance won't cover most assistive technology, and people on Medicaid in Colorado have a strict limit on the amount of wealth they can have, so we have to keep this product affordable for someone with an injury. If we took investor money or loans early on, we would have to set the product cost much higher to repay that money," explains Mr. Moritz.
The goal is to keep the cost for a single device around $400, though Moritz admits that is getting hard to achieve, as the donations to their crowdfunding campaign have slowed down. Regardless, they hope to launch the product in October of this year after additional user testing and improvements.
Tongue Drive Wireless Device Operates Computers and Wheelchairs - Tongue Drive wireless device enables people with high-level spinal cord injuries to operate a computer and maneuver an electrically powered wheelchair by moving their tongue.
This quality-reviewed article relating to our assistive technology section was selected for publishing by the editors of Disabled World due to its likely interest to our disability community readers. Though the content may have been edited for style, clarity, or length, the article "Smart Mouthware: Control Phone or Computer Using Tongue" was originally written by JJ Moritz, President, Sapien LLC. Should you require further information or clarification, they can be contacted at sapienllc.com Disabled World makes no warranties or representations in connection therewith.
Disabled World is an independent disability community established in 2004 to provide disability news and information to people with disabilities, seniors, their family and/or carers. See our homepage for informative news, reviews, sports, stories and how-tos. You can also connect with us on Twitter and Facebook or learn more on our about us page.
Disabled World provides general information only. The materials presented are never meant to substitute for professional medical care by a qualified practitioner, nor should they be construed as such. Financial support is derived from advertisements or referral programs, where indicated. Any 3rd party offering or advertising does not constitute an endorsement.
• Cite This Page (APA): JJ Moritz, President, Sapien LLC. (2020, August 2). Smart Mouthware: Control Phone or Computer Using Tongue. Disabled World. Retrieved May 30, 2023 from www.disabled-world.com/assistivedevices/smart-mouthware.php
• Permalink: <a href="https://www.disabled-world.com/assistivedevices/smart-mouthware.php">Smart Mouthware: Control Phone or Computer Using Tongue</a>