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Blind people are deprived of countless things, including reading and accessing information that alerts us to what is going on around them. It is thanks to the Braille system that blind people can access via touch those their eyes deny them.
The Braille system uses a series of raised dots that are interpreted as letters of the alphabet and is used by blind people who learned the method. The existence of Braille opens up a whole world to those with serious visual disabilities and, to make matters worse, technology integrated Braille into modern gadgets.
The origin of the Braille system
In 1825, Louis Braille, a blind Frenchman after a childhood accident, became interested in a system used in military units that transmitted instructions by means of a tactile code to be deciphered based on points in relief, with the idea of hiding them from the enemy.
Then 13 years old, Louis Braille dedicated himself to simplifying it, adapting it to the abilities and needs of blind people, who use it not only to read, but also to write and perform in different areas of knowledge.
What is the Braille system?
The Braille system is based on six points that are distributed in different ways, falling within what is considered a binary system. It is not a language, but an internationally recognized alphabet, capable of exposing letters, numbers and even signs, which makes it truly complete.
In total, there are 256 characters in Braille, many of which owe their meaning to the one that precedes or follows it. There is even a translation of the musical notes into Braille.
How the Braille system works
Each character is based on six dots that are arranged in two parallel rows of three. Depending on what you want to represent, certain points are in relief and, when you touch them, who knows how to interpret Braille detects which letter, number or sign it corresponds to.
Although Braille is a universal alphabet, there are small variations in each language, adding letters or replacing them with others, typical of a certain language. Alphabets such as Japanese and Chinese combine sounds in Braille characters, since they are based on symbols.
The massification of Braille is such that today we can find Braille writing not only in texts created for blind people, but also in bills and elevators. Blind people have computers with Braille keyboards, mobile phones and printers, which transform a text into that alphabet.
The teaching of Braille begins at a very early age among those who were born blind and those who became blind and old are able to learn it quickly, being perhaps the door of communication from and for the most important world, replacing the sense of sight with the sense of touch in an intelligent and orderly way.