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Q&A with an inspiring entrepreneur #1: Hadeel Ayoub, Founder of BrightSign

In our Inspiring People Q&A Series, we focus on a set of entrepreneurs who are developing Wearable Technology and IoT products that will change people’s lives.

Our first entrepreneur is Hadeel Ayoub. Hadeel is a PhD student in the Department of Arts & Computational Technology at Goldsmiths College. Her research focuses on developing assistive technology pieces to disrupt the healthcare innovation industries. She is particularly driven by helping speech disabled people and children with non-verbal autism. Hadeel’s BrightSign Glove innovation is a wearable technology assistive tool that wants to “give a voice to those who can’t speak”.

Can you explain your project in one sentence?

It’s a smart glove that translates sign language into text and speech to allow people with speech disabilities to communicate in public without an interpreter.

How did you come up with the idea?

I was developing a new technology for a social care competition and I wanted to do something that helps people with disabilities.

How does your glove work?

The glove is a data glove that has a bunch of sensors and uses a recognition software that translates all your hand movements to match some words. 

What are your aspirations for BrightSign? 

I want it to be an extension of the senses and I want everyone with a speech disability to have it and use it on a daily basis.

Why did you choose NDP as your product development partner?

Two reasons: first of all, they are experts in Wearable Tech, and they specifically target projects with social input and social care so their vision aligns with mine. I like to work with people who are invested in the cause, as much as the technology.

Who has inspired you / keep inspiring you? Why?

I’m not the kind of person who looks out there and see what people do. I just want to compare myself to myself so I just want to be a good example for my students and my kids, be the best version of myself and contribute back to society. And to make people’s lives better and easier!

What would be your best advice to someone who wants to develop a wearable tech?

I’d say don’t be intimidated by the competition, don’t look around you, don’t compare yourself to others. Everybody has a unique way of developing their tech. And you can start upside down and start from anywhere but do it your way as long as it works.

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