High Tech Aids Low Vision: A Review of Image Processing for the Visually Impaired.

Howard Moshtael, Tariq Aslam, Ian Underwood, Baljean Dhillon

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Recent advances in digital image processing provide promising methods for maximizing the residual vision of the visually impaired. This paper seeks to introduce this field to the readership and describe its current state as found in the literature. A systematic search revealed 37 studies that measure the value of image processing techniques for subjects with low vision. The techniques used are categorized according to their effect and the principal findings are summarized. The majority of participants preferred enhanced images over the original for a wide range of enhancement types. Adapting the contrast and spatial frequency content often improved performance at object recognition and reading speed, as did techniques that attenuate the image background and a technique that induced jitter. A lack of consistency in preference and performance measures was found, as well as a lack of independent studies. Nevertheless, the promising results should encourage further research in order to allow their widespread use in low-vision aids.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalTranslational vision science & technology
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2015


    • image enhancement
    • image processing
    • low vision
    • sensory aid
    • visually impaired persons


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