New tech is music to disabled student’s ears

Lifestyle

New tech is music to disabled student’s ears

Computer scientist and musician’s invention enables woman with cerebral palsy to play the harp with her eyes

Deborah Kyvrikosaios

Alexandra Kerlidou sits in her wheelchair on stage in Athens, Greece. With only the shift of her eyes across a computer screen, the 21-year-old fills the air with harp music.

The student with cerebral palsy, who cannot use her hands or speak, is playing the “Eyeharp”, gaze-controlled digital software which allows people with disabilities to play music, something she had never thought possible.

“I felt strange, I had never imagined such a thing,” said Kerlidou, using a speech-generating computer program as she described trying the “instrument” for the first time in her home on Lesbos with creator Zacharias Vamvakousis...

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