What We Do

We are a startup with a different twist

  • The founder is a 12 year old boy
  • He inspired us to be on a mission to innovate to help others
  • Simplistic thinking
  • We find alternative routes to design that can bring down the price in the magnitude of more than 1/2 offered currently.

Braigo and BraigoLabs is committed towards creating, researching, designing, and developing new technology innovations and services everyday!

“Technology should help us to make our life easier and not become a burden due to high cost”
— Braigo Inventor, Shubham Banerjee

HISTORY

Developed by Shubham Banerjee, a 7th grade student from Santa Clara, California. BRAIGO is a Braille Printer using Lego Mindstorms EV3. This concept slashes the price of a printer from more than $2000 to around $350 for education, teaching and home use purposes. Thus giving a more cost effective printer for the disadvantaged.

In a recent update , posted by the student on BRAIGO’s Facebook Page on Feb 13, 2014, he has mentioned some of the ideas behind the concept.

1) This Braigo v1.0 is the proof of concept to show – IT WORKS
2) I am not assembling and selling BRAIGO
3) Braille as a language has lots of variants all over the world. This DIY (Do-It-Yourself) approach towards a Braille printer, gives the opportunity to educational institutions and even parents to have a cheaper options to teach Braille
4) No , this model doesn’t print thousands of words/minute – but has a range of 5-7 secs/letter
5) At this moment you input one letter at a time – But I am working on the next version where a full page can be recognized through the bluetooth module in EV3
6) I did not patent the idea, I didn’t want to go through the expensive process. I will buy another kit and work on the V2.0, I am in contact with other Blind institutes for further enhancements.
7) It started off as a project for my science fair, but looks like I may have hit on something new.
8) I want to give away the design and code for free , so that anyone can take the idea and develop further.
9) The idea came from the fact that currently the Braille printers are so costly, I wanted to see if there is a possibility to reduce the cost. In developed world its subsidized by the govt. , but in developing countries – its too much.
10) Yes, the concept can be used to develop a totally new printer, but its too much for me as a 12 year old. I have asked my father’s friends who are mechanical engineers to help.
11) Please consider , that I have done what I was capable of at this moment. I am not a company or selling a totally new revolutionary product. I came up with a concept, so that others can take it further.
12) Yes, I am thankful for all your kind words and your encouragement. I hope to contribute further in the field of science and engineering in the future
13) If any of you have any doubts about the BRAIGO and its practical implications, I think the public reception and acceptance to the concept is a proof enough.
14) Youtube videos may not be descriptive enough, but whoever saw the model in front of them understood how it works and its application in real life.

WORD FROM THE MAKER

“The challenges with assistive technologies currently available are either too expensive or difficult to obtain for normal people without government or non-profit sponsorships. According to WHO reports, there are estimated 285 million visually impaired people worldwide and 90% of them live in developing countries. At this moment the cost of a braille printer is more than $2000 for a basic version. Thus many millions of people across the world have limited access. If we could reduce the cost to below $500, we could already reduce the cost by 75%. To give access to easily assemble and build a braille printer for the masses, the basic ability of DO-IT-YOURSELF (D-I-Y) is key. The kit should be readily available at stores or procured online from reputable websites to make the process easy for adoption. Most printers operate in X (to move the print head) -Y (to push the paper) – Z (to print or not to print) co-ordinates. The printer has to be compact and self-explanatory. Engineering as a discipline is the application of scientific, economic, social, and practical knowledge in order to design, build, maintain, and improve structures, machines, devices, systems, materials and processes. In this experiment, I relied on my love of LEGO and readily available Mindstorms EV3 robotics kit to build a D-I-Y Braille printer and program the device to print in Braille. I worked with a constraint that all parts should be from one kit and maybe some low cost readily available add-ons to make such a printer. After studying the Braille language; I understood that a visually impaired individual feels through his/her fingers the bumps on a paper through a combination of 6 dots. If we could make a printer that prints (by making holes in a paper) as a mirror image of the letter and when flipping the page we should be able to translate letters into BRAILLE. I used rapid prototyping concepts where I tried to build models and programing it to see if I am able to get the desired results. I had to build and break 7 different models before settling on a final one that was able to print the six dots in a desired sequence according to the Braille standards. After which, I programmed the letters A-Z. I used a normal calculator paper to provide the proof of concept. I have validated my version 1.0 of BRAIGO and potential small updates in software necessary to perfect for the next version 2.0 at Santa Clara Valley Blind Center based in San Jose and also with Hoby Wedler at his laboratory in UC Davis. I would say that the first prototype of the proof of concept has been successful and me providing the building instructions and software as open source will provide a low cost alternative solution to the visually impaired community. I achieved a 82% reduction in cost and have been overwlemed by the encouraging feedback from both the sighted and the blind equally.! ”
—from the abstract submitted at Synopsis Science Fair by Shubham Banerjee