Indoor localization and navigation systems for individuals with visual impairments (VI) typically rely upon extensive augmentation of the physical space or expensive sensors. Thus, few systems have been adopted. This work conducts a feasibility study of whether it is possible to localize and guide people with VI using inexpensive sensors, such as compasses and pedometers, which are available in portable devices like smart phones. The proposed approach takes advantage of interaction between the system and the human user, who confirms the presence of landmarks. Experiments are employed to study what kind of directions are successful in assisting human users to reach their destination. These experiments show that Bayesian localization tools provide sufficient accuracy, while achieving real-time operation, despite the minimalistic, noisy nature of sensors and the limited computational resources available on smart phones.
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