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My highway to science - My Take

December 24, 2016

I had been attracted to physics since I was a child. There is a family legend where I supposedly opened a stereo system and fixed it.

In class 8, I entered a chemistry lab for the first time. However, I was not allowed to do any work because the teacher could not figure out how a 'blind' person would do chemistry.

It helped that my dad is a civil engineer and my mother is a trained teacher. They helped me build a chemistry lab at home. I practiced there and applied those skills at the school lab.

The next challenge in my journey came after class 10 when I had to select subjects. I had the marks for science but the inaccessibility of the science setup like introductory material and competitive exams forced me to choose commerce.

I then took up science my own way. I am a self-taught computer programmer and a creator in sensory substitution. I use software that allows me to identify images by converting them to sounds.

I have been mentioned in a few papers and thanks to the Internet I am in direct touch with scientists working in various disciplines.

It took significant doses of curiosity and much creativity to get here but the journey is worth it.

The home lab is now a bank of computers and related accessories and I am studying the use of sensors with open hardware platforms such as the Arduino.

About the Writer

Pranav Lal is a visually impaired photographer who uses a technology that converts images into sound. Using creativity and technology, he challenges the stereotypes associated with the blind.



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