The Vocable Story
Vocable AAC was born of the personal experience of a WillowTree team member and then prototyped during an internal company innovation hour. In mid-2018, a loved one of a WillowTree designer suffered from Guillain-Barré Syndrome which left her temporarily non-verbal and lacking motor function. They quickly found that there was no hardware or software available to effectively and affordably communicate without speech.
Soon after, WillowTree team members began taking steps to address this problem with Vocable, a free head-tracking app that individuals with conditions that inhibit speech and motor function can use to communicate with caregivers and loved ones. The team of developers, designers, project managers, and researchers created a product roadmap with support and expertise from Duke University speech-language pathologists. With a “mob programming” approach to the project, the team is able to quickly iterate and update the product based on feedback from the impacted community and healthcare professionals. As an open source project, anyone in the world can contribute to Vocable via GitHub.
As a company dedicated to helping digital experts thrive and to building applications that matter, WillowTree is proud to support the work of the Vocable team.