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Eyenote

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Mobile Gov Experiences are agency stories about creating anytime, anywhere, any device government services and info.__ This entry is a story shared by the U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing._ _ _

The EyeNote application scans paper money and tells the user the denomination, making U.S. paper money accessible to the blind and visually impaired.

Why We Did It

The U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing was ordered by the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to create banknotes that could easily be differentiated by blind and visually impaired people. Through information technology research, BEP found that a mobile application–specifically a native app– could be an interim solution while banknotes were made accessibile.

What We Did

The U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing created an iPhone application utilizing the phone’s native camera to scan U.S. banknotes and communicate the denomination to the user.

No special alignment is required. EyeNote was designed to work when the banknote is held in one hand and the mobile device is in the other hand–real life conditions–front, back, at an angle, or partially covered by a hand. The user scans (takes a picture) of the bill and the app speaks the denomination as well as displays it in large numbers. EyeNote works on the iPhone, newer iPod Touch and the iPad 2. BEP chose iOS (iPhone) because of the accessibility features built into the devices and available to apps. Please note the application does not authenticate a note as either real or counterfeit.

How It Worked

Eyenote has been downloaded 4,400 times since its debut October 15, 2010. The app continues to be downloaded every day.

Overall embraced by visually impaired community and positively reviewed.

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