Olfactory cues as a way to improve spatial orientation of visually impaired

Pavla Křivanová Supervisor: Dominika Palivcová Master thesis 2022
This research thesis objective is to examine the usage of the olfactory sense to improve the spatial orientation of visually impaired users. In the beginning, exploratory research is conducted with our target group. It is followed by the analysis of olfaction and olfactory interfaces, aids for spatial orientation of the visually impaired, and the role of olfaction in spatial orientation. We propose several design concepts and analyse them. The most suitable one is chosen to further prototype. We design and run an experiment to test the prototype of this selected design concept, and the results are discussed. Our extensive research also reports the best practices and findings that showed to be valuable in literature and our experiment. The aim of reporting our findings is for these aids to be easier to create in the future. As the final step of this thesis, a website design is formed. Its purpose is to educate a wide audience about our findings, raise awareness about these topics, and help to employ olfaction to aid visually impaired spatial orientation.