Thailand’s Thammasat University, in collaboration with Samsung, has created a new ink that rises up when heated, thus giving it an embossed effect, just like what you would expect from a Braille embosser. What’s revolutionary about this ink is that it can be used with regular printers on regular paper, thus eliminating the need for expensive Braille embossers that emboss on special Braille paper. What’s more interesting about it is that it would also be able to print non-braille objects as well. For example, a picture of a map could be printed with this ink on regular paper along with locations within the map printed in Braille (as seen in the image above). A combination of raised text and images will open new avenues for consuming text based material for blind people.
This ink will not only make the entire braille printing process much cheaper, but will also enable braille printing to be available to practically anyone who has a printer. No more need for Braille embossers that can cost anywhere from $2,000 – $4,000. It is estimated that the current cost of Braille printing is $1.1 per A4 size page. Touchable Ink will reduce that cost to a mere 3 cents per page .
This is what a braille document printed in Touchable Ink looks like.