TR#425: A Wearable Computing Based American Sign Language Recognizer

Thad Starner, Joshua Weaver, and Alex Pentland

Presented at: International Symposium on Wearable Computers
Cambridge, MA USA, 1997

Modern wearable computer designs package workstation level performance in systems small enough to be worn as clothing. These machines enable technology to be brought where it is needed the most for the handicapped: everyday mobile environments. This paper describes a research effort to make a wearable computer that can recognize (with the possible goal of translating) sentence level American Sign Language (ASL) using only a baseball cap mounted camera for input. Current accuracy is approximately 98% per word on a 40 word lexicon.