Experts at the IDC School of Design, IIT Bombay have developed Jellow Communicator, a free android app to aid communication in children and adults facing speech related problems. Team of therapists, graphic designers, software programmers and animators were involved in the project. The app would be of great help to children with Cerebral Palsy, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Down syndrome and brain injury as well as adults who have lost their speech following a stroke.
After considerable user studies and research, the app with visually appealing and easy-to-learn interface was developed using a novel Visual Emotional Language Protocol (VELP). It consists of central category buttons and expressive side-buttons, where each category button includes an extensive library of options arranged hierarchically into sub-categories. To aid speaking, a user has to press a category/ sub-category button followed by an expressive side-button.
Jellow has around 8200 lines of pre-programmed vocabulary each in English and Hindi. Apart from being a communicator, the app can teach children sequential steps of daily activities such as brushing, going to the toilet and bathing. The app has content, icons and accent designed according to the Indian context and allows the user to make the app speak custom typed sentences.. Microsoft Design Expo and the E-kalpa project sponsored under NMEICT by MHRD supported the development of Jellow.
The app Jellow Communicator can be downloaded free of cost from Google Playstore. While the application is continuously undergoing developments, the institute is open to the suggestions from the users regarding the improvements.