Running The blind man ran a five-kilometer run alone with the help of an artificial intelligence phone app: “I felt free”

American enthusiastic running enthusiast Thomas Panek was surprised to contact Google.

American Thomas Panek ran a five-mile run in New York’s Central Park on Thursday. Countless other running jogging friends do the same.

What makes Panek the case is extremely exceptional is that he is blind and ran his run without a guide dog or helper.

How was it practically possible?

Panek, 50, was using a brand new AI-based phone app that gave him instructions for headphones.

“It is safest for a blind person to sit still. I’m not going to sit still, ”Panek told Reuters.

Panek’s vision began to decline at the age of primary school, and he became blind in his twenties permanently due to an inherited disease. For his work, he runs a guide dog school.

Panek was not running for a long time, but now he is an avid marathon runner. He initially ran with the help of guide runners. He then embarked on running events with the guide dog.

However, Panek wanted more independence in running. A year ago, he decided to look for a way to run alone.

Panek contacted Google and waited for the most interesting discussion on the subject.

He says he was surprised how the matter was welcomed there. This is how the partnership with Google, which connects Alphabet Inc, began.

Born in A phone app called Guideline, in which the camera of a phone attached to a runner’s waist collects information about the location of a line painted in the center of the treadmill and converts it into an audible signal coming from the runner’s ear, the intensity of which describes his position laterally and relative to the centerline.

For example, if a runner drifts to the left of the line, the sound becomes in his left ear and the louder the sideways the runner advances.

Even on Thursday’s test run, a yellow centerline was painted on the park route.

“I am waited for this for 25 years, running outdoors and alone. Then when I started running, I felt free as if I had run through the clouds. In the paint, emotions came to the surface. For the first time in a long time, I didn’t feel blind, ”Panek described in a Thursday release on the blog his first outdoor test run.

“I didn’t think this would ever happen,” the moved Panek samnoo as described in the tests on video, which shows how other blind people try the app.

The Central Park route in New York had a painted yellow centerline for the test run.­

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