Tag Archive

tactile maps

Tactile Maps and Wayfinding Tools

The LightHouse has a diverse portfolio of tactile maps and wayfinding tools that includes clients such as UC Berkeley, Bay Area Rapid Transit, Music Festivals, and the Calgary Transit System,

If you’re considering a tactile map for your event or venue, contact MADLab@lighthouse-sf.org.

More information about tactile and talking maps:

Because of the visual nature of most information, people who are blind or have low vision cannot readily use the wealth of information provided in the environments for general information, wayfinding and safety. Tactile maps are highly effective at remediating these concerns.

Having created numerous tactile, audio-tactile, and strip maps of transit systems, colleges, hospitals, amusement parks, park and trail maps the LightHouse is the preeminent trailblazer in the design of maps used by blind and visually impaired people.

By including blind designers and collaborators, we always ensure the needs of the blind are intimately understood and properly addressed in the final product. We have successfully created tactile, audio-tactile, and strip maps of several San Francisco Bay Area transit systems and City of Calgary’s complex transit system. As the vanguard creators of tactile transit maps, we are uniquely prepared to design and implement cutting-edge tactile maps for transit agencies.

By incorporating Braille as well as large print, we can ensure that the majority of blind travelers benefit from tactile maps regardless of their skill level. Successful tactile transit guides relay information in ways where braille is not a necessary skill. For example, raised lines identify walls and paths of travel, and special symbols not related to Braille indicate points of interest such as the location of entrances and exits. By using, but not relying solely upon Braille, we can ensure that the majority of blind travelers will benefit from tactile transit maps regardless of their Braille skills.

The study “Attitudes of Visually Impaired Persons Toward the Use of Public transportation” found that a majority of individuals surveyed experienced frustration at not being able to drive and having to depend on others for their transportation needs; however those surveyed also reported that using effective public transit allowed them to remain independent.

Despite regular use of public transportation among individuals in the blind and visually impaired community, the study found that the majority of travelers had difficulty with the following aspects of public transit:

  • Estimating where they were when they were traveling;
  • Finding pick-up points for different modes of transportation;
  • Communicating with the driver about where to stop;
  • Getting to and from the nearest bus stop.

To discuss the creation of tactile maps, wayfinding tools and their many forms and applications, please contact MADLab@lighthouse-sf.org.

Win 2 Tickets to the Treasure Island Music Festival with LightHouse SF!

the scene at treasure island, including palm trees and a ferris wheel

What adaptive tech, app, or blindness device would you never be caught on an island without? Share your answer along with a link to this blog post, and you’ll be entered to win two free tickets (more than $300 value) to the Treasure Island Music Festival this weekend, Oct 17-18, 2015. You can share via Twitter, Facebook, or by copying us on an email to your friends. Contestants who use the hashtag #doTIblind will have an even better chance of winning.

braille and large print versions of the Treasure Island Music Festival schedule

We did it for Burning Man, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, and now we’re excited to announce that we’ve teamed up with the Treasure Island Music Festival to produce and distribute our signature festival guides for the blind and low vision bon vivant! This time we’ve created separate braille and large print schedules, with locations and set times for each artist at Treasure Island, including their star-studded new comedy tent and the ever-popular Silent Disco! The programs we made are inspired by the festival’s own design theme (with colors optimized for low vision) and emblazoned with the awesome little TIMF logo. So even if your phone dies and the lights get low, you’ll have all the information you need in your pocket and at your fingertips.

If that wasn’t enough, we teamed up with the festival to send two lucky members of our community to experience Treasure Island for free! Not only will you get to spend the weekend partying on us, but you’ll get to be some of the first to try out our accessible festival guides. And though this is truly a contest made by the blind, for the blind, we won’t prohibit sighted folks from participating, as long as they promise to bring a blind pal along if they win! So tell us about your favorite blindness tool, share this link, and get ready to spend a weekend on the Island.