Echolocation: Daniel Kish

They call him the real-life Batman. That's because Daniel Kish is blind, and has learned to navigate the world by bouncing sound off the objects around him - much the same way that bats do. Kish is now teaching the technique - known as echolocation - to other blind people, and is attracting a lot of attention from the scientific world along the way.



Part Three of The Current

Echolocation: Daniel Kish

We started this segment with 45-year-old Daniel Kish, speaking to NPR. And you'd never know it, but he's blind. Daniel lost his eyesight to retinal cancer when he was just 13 months old. But he's developed a new way to "see" the world. It's called echolocation or flash sonar and it's a method of bouncing sound off nearby surfaces to help him perceive objects around him. It's how bats navigate. Only they screech. The sound Daniel uses? The click of a tongue ...

Daniel Kish has been teaching others how to use ecolocation, through his organization - World Access for the Blind. And his methods have gained a lot of attention in the scientific world, too. In fact, he's the subject of a study released last week by the University of Western Ontario's Centre for Brain and Mind.

For that study, researchers monitored Daniel's brain activity while he used echolocation to picture his surroundings. Daniel Kish joined us from West Haven, Connecticut.

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Music Bridge

Artist: Five Stone
Cd: Five Stone: Instrumentals
Cut: # 2, Strike and Fade
Label: November Sixteenth Publishing

Last Word - Frat Boy

We ended the program today with a little teaser of something we're working on for tomorrow's show.  Earlier this month, Yale University banned the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity from its campus for five years.  University officials acted after new members of the frat were caught on videotape chanting obscenities against women. The incident - and the university's reaction - have reignited an old debate ... Do fraternities promote misogynistic behaviour?  Do they have a place on campus? 

The Current's Lisa Hale went to the Sigma Chi House on the UBC campus to get the perspective of some of that frat's members.   She spoke to 23-year-old master's student Christopher Roach.  He's a Sigma Chi alumnus, and he says that fraternities are generally misunderstood.  Christopher Roach got the last word today.


Other segments from today's show:

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