The candidate for the Ellen and Vincent Forlenza '75 Endowed Chair in Health Innovation and Technology position is a Full Professor and the Associate Director for Research Engagement in the School of Computing at Wichita State University. The candidate directs the Assistive and Accessible Computing (ACCESS) Research Laboratory which has the mission of exploring the design, evaluation, and use of computing and information technologies (in the form of Assistive and Accessibility Technologies) to benefit people challenged by health disparities, including disabilities. The candidate has received several college and university level awards for research, teaching, and innovation.  The candidate received their Ph.D. from UMass Amherst and has held appointments as an Adjunct Senior Scientist at the Envision Research Institute and as an Affiliated Faculty in the Dept. of Biomedical Engineering

at Wichita State University.

Research Talk: "Towards Accessible Built Environments for Persons with Disabilities."

Persons with disabilities in our communities often find it difficult to achieve and maintain an independent and high quality of life. A significant cause of this issue is the challenge in independently accessing unfamiliar built environments within the community. These challenges are most acute in areas with limited or no global positioning system (GPS) coverage, such as indoor environments and areas surrounding tall buildings. Such GPS-limited areas also have limited mapping and routing information available for efficient path planning. This talk will introduce the wayfinding problem for persons with disabilities in GPS-limited areas and describe the current state of the art in indoor positioning and associated location services. Subsequently, the talk will go into the details of the solution approach taken by a project called CityGuide whose long-term goal is to design, deploy, evaluate, and refine an inclusive community-wide system for wayfinding accessed through a smartphone app. CityGuide is envisioned to provide various auxiliary location-based services (ALBSs) for people with disabilities (and the general population) in a seamless fashion and at scale, complementing satellite-based GPS systems. Building upon this core wayfinding application as a service, numerous other needs of persons with disabilities can be met through careful application design. Some specific applications of interest that will be discussed are the following: emergency evacuation, remote assistance, tourism, and transit.




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