The B&D messenger, designed by Okada Noriaki, bills itself as a way for both blind and deaf people to communicate via text message. Though there are several Braille phone products already in the market, Noriaki device is much smaller in size and pretty inexpensive. On one side of the gadget is twelve points that rise and fall in braille lettering; on the other side is a small LCD screen and a regular numerical touch pad. Users must connect the B&D messenger to a computer for it to receive and translate texts.
Noriaki lowered the B&D's cost by building it's chassis out of cardboard (the entire thing can be put together yourself), and by running its braille lettering program off an open source platform. I'm not completely sure how this technology helps deaf people any more regular phones, but it's a cool concept for helping out the visually impaired. [B&D Messenger via Tuvie]