Eyewear Brings Sight to the Legally Blind

March 31, 2015

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. live / laɪv / (adj.) – referring to something that can be watched or listened to as it happens
Example My friend is going to watch a live concert tonight.

2. adjust / əˈdʒʌst / (v.) – to make something fit or suitable
Example: You can adjust the camera lens to get sharper pictures.

3. genetic /dʒəˈnɛt ɪk/ (adj.) – relating to the genes or inherited traits
Example: Most genetic illnesses are difficult to cure.

4. practically /ˈpræk tɪk li / (adv.) – almost; in effect
Example: Without his eyeglasses, he is practically blind.

5. reimbursement /ˌri ɪmˈbɜrs mənt / (n.) – repayment for an expense or loss
Example: You may apply for reimbursement to get your money back.


Read the text below.
A $15,000 eyewear helps the legally blind to see. The technology—developed by Canada-based company eSight—uses a video camera to capture live images and display them onto the screens built into the glasses.

This eyewear also allows the wearer to adjust the different aspects of the image, such as contrasts, brightness, or sharpness, to make viewing easier.

Kathy Beitz is one of those who benefited from the eyewear. Beitz suffers from a genetic disorder that causes the light-sensitive cells in the retina to decay. When her second child was born, she used the glasses to see her baby, much to her amazement. Beitz says that the eyewear has changed her life completely. It helped her better attend to her children’s needs and do important chores at home.

A person who is legally blind is not absolutely blind. But because the eyesight is so poor, the person is considered practically blind. In Beitz’s case, she could only recognize fuzzy shapes in daylight and none at all during nighttime.

Presently, only about 140 people have these costly glasses in North-America. But eSight is finding ways to bring its eyewear to more visually-impaired people. Its actions include insurance reimbursements, government programs, corporate sponsorships, crowdsourcing, and other fundraising efforts to make the technology available to those in need of the glasses but cannot afford to pay.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A 

·         How does your government help those who are blind?
·         Would it be difficult for a legally blind person to live in Japan? Kindly explain.

Discussion B

·         If you could invent a tool to help people with disability, what would it be? Kindly discuss briefly.
·         How does disability help us change the way we look at the world?

March 31, 2015