Power Reader


The dyslexic community accounts for 15-20% of the U.S. population. Our goal is to build a dyslexic text reader/learning tool, a graphical, interactive text reader integrated with computer text-to-speech whose level of focus, complexity, and detail is adjustable according to the user's needs.

In other words, a multiple 'level of detail' presentation of text where items can be viewed at the letter, word, sentence, and paragraph level, allowing the user needs to adjust it to their needs. Items can grow or shrink in size as they are read by the software, and the color of the text can also be adjusted. Image representations and dictionary definitions of words can be displayed next to the word as each word is read. A speech API (Free-TTS) reads each word that has the current focus, and the user can adjust the speed the text is read through.

This project idea was originally submitted by a dyslexic lady and developed within a user interface course at the University of Southern California.


  • Zoomable User Interface
  • Interactive paragraph/sentence/word selection
  • Integration with Google Images, Flickr, and Yahoo Images for image lookup
  • Integration with Wiktionary, WordNet Dictionary for dictionary definition lookup
  • Much more


Windows (zip) – 10.86 MB

Source Code

Google Code

Current Issues

  • Not OS X friendly due to a bug in Java3D which does not render emissive materials correctly on OS X
  • Some threading issues need to be resolved
  • Occassional Crashes

Future Plans

  • Symbol set as alternative to Google Images/Flickr
  • Keyboard access
  • Expand number of input formats



Christopher Leung
Zhan Shi
Rubaiz Virk

Concept Provided by

Nadine Bass

Discussion List

General Discussion List
Developer Discussion List

Video Demonstration

Screen Shots

Project Notes

Project Status: