A Mobile-Cloud Collaborative Traffic Lights Detector for Blind Navigation

Abstract: Context-awareness is a critical aspect of safe navigation, especially for the blind and visually-impaired in unfamiliar environments. Existing mobile devices for context- aware navigation fall short in many cases due to their dependence on specific infrastructure requirements as well as having limited access to resources that could provide a wealth of contextual clues. In this work, we propose a mobile-cloud collaborative approach for context-aware navigation, where we aim to exploit the computational power of resources made available by Cloud Computing providers as well as the wealth of location-specific resources available on the Internet to provide maximal context-awareness. The system architecture we propose also has the advantages of being extensible and having minimal infrastructural reliance, thus allowing for wide usability. A traffic lights detector was developed as an initial application component of the proposed system and experiments performed to test appropriateness for the real- time nature of the problem.