Frugal recognition smartglasses to help patients with memory disorders remember names #SDGclass2017

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How does Remnesia work?

Remnesia are smartglasses using a facial recognition software. The point is to change the sensorial channel by providing auditory information replacing visual information. The webcam on the glasses will be connected to earphones.

What are memory disorders?

Memory disorders are the result of damage to neuroanatomical structures that hinder the storage, retention and recollection of memories. Memory disorders can be progressive, including Alzheimer's disease, or they can be immediate including disorders caused by head injuries.

The most common disorder is dementia. [Dementia]

Which refers to a large number of disorders characterized by the progressive deterioration of the thinking ability and memory as the brain becomes damaged. It can be categorized as reversible or irreversible. There are several types of memory disorders which can have different degrees: Agnosia, Alzheimer’s disease, Amnesia or Traumatic brain injury.

To know more about these several types of memory disorders [Read more].

Moreover, incidence and prevalence of memory problems vary and depend on the type. Amnesia affects approximately 20 percent of people over the age of 70. And according to Alzheimer's Disease International, approximately 35 million people worldwide suffer from dementia and about two-thirds of these people live in developing countries. For these reasons, I want to provide a cheap solution to counter the issues that affect public health.

Why is it important to build a frugal device for patients with memory disorders?

  • Help/Support in their daily life: live without caretakers
  • Allow patients’ cerebral reeducation
  • Facilitate communication between people. Patient with a certain type of amnesia loses the ability to create new memories, it seems like a form of torture for him/her, and forces the patient to live in a haze of confusion and fear for decades.
  • No treatment is currently available to cure memory disorders or to alter its progressive course

What are the principal goals for cognitive impairment care?

  • early diagnosis in order to promote early and optimal management
  • optimizing physical health, cognition, activity and well-being
  • detecting and treating challenging behavioral and psychological symptoms
  • providing information and long-term support to careers.

Memory disorders, and more specifically dementia, are overwhelming for the families of the affected people and their careers. Physical, emotional and economic pressure can cause great stress to families and careers, and support is required from the health, social, financial and legal systems.

REMNESIA Poster.jpg

This is the poster from the exhibition at the science museum in Paris

JPEG Image - 360.12 kB - 09/04/2017 at 09:52


Remnesia Project.jpg

This image shows the global project

JPEG Image - 365.52 kB - 07/27/2017 at 12:02


  • 1 × Raspberry Pi Zero Wifi V1.1
  • 1 × Raspberry Pi Camera V2.1

  • 2017 Shenzhen iSDG Assembly

    maleke.mou09/04/2017 at 13:37 0 comments

    I developt this project as part as CRI Labs’ summer school around the UN Sustainable Development Goals and "co-design innovative solutions for global sustainability".

    [Read More about the CRI Labs Summer School]

    My project fits the goal number 3 “Good health and well-being”. [Read more about SDGs]

    In this context, we were offered the opportunity to take part in the iSDG Shenzhen Assembly, just like other students and teachers from Harvard, Geneva University, Tshingua University...

    The goal of this assembly was to gather students, researchers and makers - from all over the world and from different background - involved on this thematic. We had time to share experiences, ideas, feedbacks. And concerning my own project, I received the help from Chinese students and others, about my “wireless step”. For example, why not using images segmentations techniques that can be used offline instead of the Amazon API.


    I also had the chance to participate in a small workshop on how to establish a business model with the canvas from

    Another log will be posted later with my project’s business model.

  • Step 5: A new design

    maleke.mou09/04/2017 at 11:14 0 comments

    To integrate the new pi-camera, I re-designed the glasses model I used before. To do that I used Fusion 360 – a free design software.

  • Step 4: Make it wireless

    maleke.mou09/04/2017 at 10:51 0 comments

    The goal now is to make a prototype more independent from the computer than before.

    Thus, I used a Raspberry Pi Zero Wifi and a Pi Camera. Indeed, this Pi is the smallest and the lightest we can find.

    After installing Raspbian in it – which is the Foundation’s official supported operating system – I downloaded the face recognition API from AWS.

    However, when I tried to make this API run, I couldn’t! It said: “access to the camera denied” even after I enabled my Pi Camera in “raspiconfig”. And to make sure that my camera is functional, I tried the command “raspistill” to take a photo and it worked!

    I am trying to figure if this problem is due to the JavaScript (I heard that the Pi prefers Python) or to the connection Pi-Camera because it’s not a simple USB connection like before. So, I am still looking for a solution to this problem.

    In the meantime, I wanted to run the face recognition software without having to interact with the html page of the API. Therefore, I created a little system with a tiny breadboard and a button.

  • Exhibition and Public Testing at the Cité des Sciences - Paris

    maleke.mou09/04/2017 at 09:50 0 comments

    I presented my project to the public for the first time on the 4th of August at the Cité des Sciences in Paris. This beautiful event was organized by the CRI and other projects of the CRI Labs’ Summer School were presented as well.

    It was the occasion to make my prototype tested and to have some feedback from science’s amateur, teachers, curious families (children and old people).

    Even if my prototype worked properly, I received some interesting notes about how patients that already have glasses could wear this device. Of course, the necessity on being in the database to be recognized is a stake to be considered. But the most important critic is to make the device wireless and more independent from the computer.

    You can find my project's poster in files

  • Step 3: Glasses Construction

    maleke.mou08/07/2017 at 14:37 0 comments

    Printing glasses in 3D and I used an external webcam which I disassembled.

    Here is the Glasses model I found in open source to realize mine

  • Step 2: Modifying the JavaScript

    maleke.mou08/07/2017 at 14:31 0 comments

    Then, I needed to change the output of the facial recognition API from a written into an audio channel, I modified the JavaScript with a speech synthesis

    var utter= new SpeechSynthesisUtterance(("cette personne est") +;
              utter.voice = window.speechSynthesis.getVoices()[0];

  • Step 1: Using the Amazon Web Service API

    maleke.mou08/07/2017 at 14:28 0 comments

    In order to have a facial recognition software rapidly usable, I used an API from Amazon Web Service. I wanted a single web page that would allow me to grab a photo and perform some basic recognition algorithms on the photo. 

    Amazon released their own image recognition engine (Amazon Rekognition service) on their platform. This allows me to create one or more collections. A collection is a data base of facial vectors for sample photos. Once you have a collection on Amazon, you can then take a subject photo and have it compare the features to its reference collection, and return the closest match.

    Furthermore, you can store your data freely on the amazon server.

    All the instructions you need to download the libraries and use the API are detailed at the following link:

    Instructions Amazon Rekognition

    NOTE: I had some problem installing all the ruby's library with "bundle install". I needed to install all library one by one threw my teminal..

  • MoSCow method

    maleke.mou08/07/2017 at 10:14 0 comments

    MUST HAVE (vital)

    • facial recognition software
    • camera
    • change sensorial channel information into auditory information
    • 3D glasses and/or adaptor for glasses
    • Storage data/machine learning in computer


    • Wifi connection


    • Streaming video
    • Be able to recognize objects of daily life
    • Storage data in smartphone


    • Sophisticated design

View all 8 project logs

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