USA: Ai Squared Releases Window-Eyes 9 Screen Reader
Ai Squared announces the release of Window-Eyes 9, a popular software program used by people who are blind or have low vision to access and productively use their computers. Window-Eyes 9 offers numerous new innovative features and functionality that enhance the overall user experience for every user.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/01/13/ai-squared-releases-window-eyes-9-screen-reader/, January 13, 2015
India: Delhi University to Develop Math Kits for Students with Vision Disabilities
To make solving numerical problems less taxing for students with vision disabilities, Delhi University (DU) is developing specialized ‘mathematical kits’ which will make it much easier for them to study the subject. DU, which boasts of a well-stocked Braille library, had last year installed a special technology in all its libraries to enable students with vision disabilities to also access the books. The technology called ‘Inclusive Print Access Project’ can scan books and automatically transcribe the text to speech.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/01/12/delhi-university-to-develop-math-kits-for-students-with-vision-disabilities/, January 12, 2015
USA: Microsoft Rolls Out New Accessibility Options to Office Online
Microsoft has rolled out several new accessibility improvements to give users who are blind and have low vision a better Office Online experience. Microsoft has made the suite accessible to users who are blind and have low vision by using a new web accessibility standard called WAI-ARIA (Web Accessibility Initiative – Accessible Rich Internet Applications). While this web standard has allowed Office Online to be usable with a screen reader, Microsoft has made some further improvements over the past year to provide an even better experience.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/01/12/microsoft-rolls-out-new-accessibility-options-to-office-online/, January 12, 2015
India: Governments Buildings Still Inaccessible to People With Disabilities
The State Disabilities Commission has set a February 28 deadline for government departments to inform him of the accessibility measures they have implemented. Commissioner K S Rajanna took up a suo moto case late last year, directing government departments and state-run institutions to implement the Non-Discrimination clauses of the Persons with Disabilities Act of 1995. Compliance is just about 20 per cent, his office said. Secretaries and principal secretaries are required to furnish the information on the steps they have taken so far.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/01/09/governments-buildings-still-inaccessible-to-people-with-disabilities/, January 09, 2015
USA: 4th Annual World Down Syndrome Day Conference
Down Syndrome International announces the 4th World Down Syndrome Day Conference, based on the theme “‘My Opportunities, My Choices’ – Enjoying Full and Equal Rights and the Role of Families” will take place at United Nations HQ in New York, USA on March 20, 2015. People with Down syndrome, on an equal basis with other people, must be able to enjoy full and equal rights, both as children and adults with ‘opportunities’ and ‘choices’.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/01/09/4th-annual-world-down-syndrome-day-conference/, January 09, 2015
Intel Offers Glimpse of Emerging Accessible Technologies
Computer chip manufacturer Intel has revealed new technologies it is working on which will make devices such as smart phones, tablets and PCs more accessible to people with disabilities. Showcasing the new technologies in a keynote speech at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) conference in Las Vegas, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich said that, increasingly, devices would move toward easier and more natural controls—away from mice and keyboards and flat screens to devices which could better interpret physical gestures and voice commands as controls.
From http://www.accessiq.org/news/news/2015/01/intel-offers-glimpse-of-emerging-accessible-technologies, January 08, 2015
Beyond Alt-Text: A Wave of New Senior Corporate Positions in Accessible Technology
In the last 2 years, at least four big tech companies have created positions in accessible technology — a move that seems to signal a serious commitment to making products and services usable by people with all kinds of abilities and needs. AT&T named Christopher Rice as “Chief Accessibility Officer” in early 2013. Since then, others have followed suit: IBM’s Frances West and Microsoft’s Robert Sinclair, both of them longtime leaders in inclusive and adaptive technologies, were given the same new CAO position and title. And this summer, Yahoo tapped Larry Goldberg, former leader of the National Center for Accessible Media — they brought the world closed-captioned television — to be its first Director of Accessible Media.
From https://medium.com/@ablerism/beyond-alt-text-103b00eec89, January 08, 2015
Philippines: Accessible Education Centers for People with Disabilities Pushed
A lawmaker has pushed for the establishment of “accessible education centers” in each state university and college (SUC) in the country for people with disabilities, most of whom have not finished college. Nueva Ecija Rep. Estrellita Suansing authored House Bill 5270 or the proposed “Accessible Education Act,” which seeks to establish the centers with the needed government funding. “From a survey conducted in 2009, only 25 percent of the total respondents either reached or finished college education,” Suansing said.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/01/08/accessible-education-centers-for-people-with-disabilities-pushed/, January 08, 2015
World’s First Online International Deaf-Blind Conference translated by Translate Your World
The world’s first online across-language conference for people who are deaf-blind will be held via the internet on January 24 and 25, and offered simultaneously as subtitles in 78 different languages and as translated synthesized voice in 35 languages. The public is invited to attend this online event, including teachers, counselors, medical professionals, diversity specialists, support service providers, corporate communication leaders, sign language interpreters, governmental representatives, plus family and members of the Deaf, Blind, and DeafBlind communities.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/01/08/worlds-first-online-international-deaf-blind-conference-translated-by-translate-your-world/, January 08, 2015
CES 2015: Siemens Introduces Smart Hearing Aids
At the 2015 International CES, Siemens is unveiling smart hearing aids—their latest in wearable hearing technology. The hearing aids can be discreetly controlled via both iPhone and Android devices, with latest models clinically proven to outperform people with normal hearing in background noise. When two hearing aids are worn (the most common case), Siemens’ new smart hearing aids utilize intelligent, two-way wireless communication to zero in on desired speech with pinpoint accuracy. This enables better-than-normal hearing in crowded situations like noisy restaurants and cocktail parties where background chatter has historically been a challenge.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2015/01/07/siemens-introduces-smart-hearing-aids/, January 07, 2015