What could be stranger than the thought of a deaf who can actually hear “Wi-Fi”?! He is a London based writer, Frank Swain. In his early 20’s, he was diagnosed with hearing loss symptoms. Doctors advised him to use hearing aids so that he may be able to hear properly.
Mr. Frank tells that he was inspired to hack his hearing aids from the day he got his hearing devices. In the next two years, he and a sound artist, Daniel Jones made a device that can make Wi-Fi signals audible. This device was called Phantom Terrains. They both received a grant from UK innovation charity.
Phantom Terrains was compatible with Swain’s iPhone. Interestingly, his phone was able to catch signals which are nearby to collect details. These details consist of the name of the router, signify the signal strength of the Wi-Fi device, and also specify the distance.
The details are obtained in a specific sonic tone. Every detail has its particular tone which is associated with the phone. The details are caught with the help of a Bluetooth hearing aid. This specifies that Mr. Frank will always be able to catch these kind of signals as long as he carries his phone with him.
He also made a map and a specified audio. He wanted to show when he takes a walk around the BBC broadcasting House in Central London how internet sounds like.
When Mr. Swain was interviewed regarding this extraordinary ability, he said “The information received is converted into sound signals which are then received on the phone. Signals coming from detached places are concentrated, while the strong signals coming from nearby places bear their own network ID which is then converted to looped melody”.
He further explained, “The received audio is then connected wirelessly over a Bluetooth to a pair of hearing aids. These devices are specially designed to mix the normal outcome given by the Bluetooth and the audio received.” According to him, this kind of preparation supports him in hearing the Wi-Fi sounds in his usual hearing.
In this rapidly changing competitive environment, we come across various new technologies. However, this man has believed that everyone will have an urge to wear an earpiece connecting them to their smartphone very soon. He said: “We are striving to reach up to a level where we will be actually able to interact with our devices.”
He looks at an individual level and he has analyzed that his project will help people who are suffering from hearing loss. The use of this device can help them change their thoughts about their impairment while enhancing their positive attitudes towards life.