Icelandic Man Builds Talking Clock For Blind Grandmother - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Icelandic Man Builds Talking Clock For Blind Grandmother

Published February 16, 2018

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Screenshot of Íslandsklukkan intro video

An Icelandic man who could find no talking clock that speaks Icelandic for his blind grandmother has taken matters into his own hands, and is seeking funding to begin a production line.

Talking clocks for the blind are ubiquitous in many parts of the world but, as RÚV reports, no such device exists that uses Icelandic. Björn Á. Magnússon, whose grandmother is blind, took it upon himself to make an Icelandic talking clock a reality, and Íslandsklukkan (literally “the clock of Iceland”) was born.

Björn has worked with computers for about 20 years, but this feat of engineering still required help. This he solicited from university students and Halldór Axelsson of Elab, amongst others. Once the programming was complete, Fablab saw about designing the exterior of the clock itself. A few weeks later, the prototype was complete.

Íslandsklukkan will not solely be for his grandmother, either. In cooperation with the Innovation Center of Iceland, the Innovation Center for Mobility and the Icelandic Association of the Visually Impaired, Björn has gotten in touch with a manufacturer who was willing to build 500 copies.

A crowdfunding campaign at Karolina Fund has been started to finance the first production line. Íslandsklukkan, which is battery-powered, will be made available to the public at large after the funding goal has been reached.

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