Braille is a set of 3-by-2 tactile patterns that have a one-to-one mapping with the English alphabet utilized by the visually impaired to read and write. Techniques of this disclosure enable a computing device, such as a smartphone, tablet, wearable device (e.g., smart watch), laptop, etc., to activate particular patterns of haptic motors of the computing device that correspond to each character. The computing device may digitally encode the text shown on the display into braille dots using an on-device character recognition system. When the user raster-scans their finger over different pixels of the screen, the computing device determines the particular braille dots at the location of the user’s finger and activates a pattern of haptic motors corresponding to the particular pattern of braille dots at the location of the user’s finger. In this way, the user may perceive a haptic pattern that corresponds to the pattern of the braille dots that the user is “touching” on a computing device without requiring physical morphing the display and without requiring physical modification of the computing device.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.