Fingerspelling Bee

The Fingerspelling Bee Application is intended to aid users with learning, identifying, and enhancing their capabilities at fingerspelling. Unlike ASL (American Sign Language), the scope of fingerspelling is to use individual letters that are formed by the fingers to spell out words.

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Prototype

A high-fidelity prototype was conceived during the fall semester of 2020. The overall design is meant to give it a modern look, using a dark theme and as well as rethinking the game design of a digital language-learning site to give it a structure that is fairly similar to a mobile camera app. The following is a screen-by-screen walkthrough of the newly envisioned design to better understand the nature of the app.

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Fingerspelling

The initial screen when the application opens will be ‘Fingerspelling’. It was decided this would be the main focus of the app and will work as the Home Screen overall.

Practice

Second screen in the bottom navigation menu. User can exercise their knowledge as Paula fingerspells words. User can also adjust the categories that filters the words Paula will spell. For every correct word, the user will collect a certain amount of coins or points.


Overview of the ASL Project

Our goal is to enable automatic translation of English into American Sign Language, the language of the Deaf in North America. American Sign Language is not English coded as signs but an entirely different language from English with an entirely different structure.

Automated English-to- ASL translation will increase Deaf access to the hearing world. We are currently developing tools for generating ASL animation in response to spoken English.

Our avatar, named "Paula" for DePaul University, can portray all linguistic parameters of ASL. Paula has earned high marks for clarity and naturalness from users fluent in ASL.

Our avatar, named "Paula" for DePaul University, can portray all linguistic parameters of ASL. Paula has earned high marks for clarity and naturalness from users fluent in ASL.


About American Sign Language (ASL)

American Sign Language (ASL) is the preferred language of the Deaf in North America. As a visual-gestural language, it utilizes handshape, position, palm orientation, movement, and non-manual signals. There is no one-to-one correspondence between ASL and English, as some signs translate into English as phrases or sentences. A manual alphabet is used to fingerspell names, technical terms, and loan words.

At present, human ASL translators are essential for effective communication between Deaf and hearing presenters and their audiences. Skilled ASL translators are in high demand and often not available for brief interactions. As a consequence, communication between hearing and Deaf people may be impaired or made impossible, to the disadvantage of both groups.

An ASL avatar will make information affordably accessible to Deaf people, enabling them to understand spoken interactions and to participate in classes and meetings. ASL is the preferred language of over 500,000 people in the United States. The DePaul project has exciting potential not only for Deaf Americans and those who interact with them but also as a prototype for communication between Deaf and hearing people around the world.


Compete

This feature will require the user to sign up or sign in prior of using it. In compete, the user can create a new competition with another user or contact/friend. Two challenges are available: speed or spelling bee challenge. For every correct word, the user will collect a certain amount of coins or points.


More (Additional features)

Other features can be found here: alphabet, where the user can have Paula spell a single letter; quiz, where the user can get tested on their skills; classroom, a future feature where a group of users can connect on a channel/server someone creates and use a stack of words (sort of like a library or flashcards) to practice a particular topic; and an about icon, where information about the team behind Paula.


Profile

User can adjust their default settings, check their level status (level, points, and badges), see their account information, invite a friend, or log out.


Text Input

Since Paula will be an ever presence figure on the app when possible, the user will access the text input by clicking on the keyboard icon on the bottom of the screen. This will open of a pop up where an input can be made.


Quick Settings and Quick Edit

Users can adjust some settings on the go from the ‘Quick Settings’ drop-down menu. Depending on the screen, the user will be able to adjust the speed and length of the words Paula will be spelling.

Like the ‘Quick Settings’, the user can drag up and down a quick edit for ‘Categories’ on the go. They can select any of the default categories or create their own.