I'm excited to announce that Bansen Labs has received a Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) for Xogo. This grant totals $1 million dollars and will help us expand our work in the disabilities field, so that we can deliver our Xogo platform as an affordable, intuitive way for people with disabilities to connect whatever devices work best for them. We
This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria. Typically, only 4-5 percent of applicants were accepted for this grant as well as the Phase I award we received, and we're honored to be among the organizations chosen. You can check us out on the NSF website here.
This Small Business Innovation Research Phase II project improves assistive devices for people with disabilities (PwD). The assistive technology industry is projected to reach $2.4 billion in 2022, and the home rehabilitation market is expected to exceed $225 billion globally by 2027. This project advances a novel hardware and software platform to give PwD full control of consumer products, including game consoles, smart home devices, drones, and business and design software. The system builds on a novel end-user development (EUD) architecture which supports applications in accessibility, IoT, gaming, physical therapy, industrial automation, and other domains involving user-controlled electronic systems. The initial application will be for children with cerebral palsy (CP) ages 5-18, but later applications include adults with physical disabilities, and the aging population. This will reduce time and resources needed for PwD to overcome access barriers, thus creating new opportunities for socialization, education, entertainment, employment, and independence.
The intellectual merit of this project is to advance a system to support plug-and-play device compatibility, with developer feedback indicating over an order of magnitude improvement on the state-of-the-art (45 times faster) for implementing accessibility use cases. This project will support the research and design of a visual user interface for non-technical users to enable them to easily configure their devices for everyday applications, as well as a visual editor to allow hobbyists and engineers to implement more demanding accessibility use cases, under guidance from user feedback at a school for children with CP in collaboration with clinical and user experience (UX) researchers. The system is anticipated to achieve over two orders of magnitude improvement in development time (up to 250 times faster) for accessibility use cases compared to existing alternatives.
About the NSF
America’s Seed Fund powered by NSF awards $200 million annually to startups and small businesses, transforming scientific discovery into products and services with commercial and societal impact. Startups working across almost all areas of science and technology can receive up to $2 million to support research and development (R&D), helping de-risk technology for commercial success. America’s Seed Fund is congressionally mandated through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The NSF is an independent federal agency with a budget of about $8.5 billion that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. For more information, visit seedfund.nsf.gov.