Computer & electronics designer and artist Vahkn Matossian has created the first high-tech baton to allow blind musicians to follow the motions of a conductor leading an orchestra, reports The Telegraph in the United Kingdom. The haptic baton was designed based upon a prototype by composer Rolf Gehlhaar, who is also Vahakn's father.
The device has microchips which translate the movement of the conductor's baton and send wireless vibrations and buzzes to electronic devices worn by visually-impaired musicians in the orchestra.
Conductor Charles Hazlewood, founder of the British Paraorchestra, tested the technology with a group of blind and visually impaired musicians. The Paraorchestra CEO Jonathan Harper likened this to augmented reality, and noted that this could be life-changing to visually impaired musicians, allowing them to join orchestras and level the playing field.