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ICCHP Tables of Contents: 940204060810-110-212-112-214-114-2

ICCHP'02: International Conference on Computers Helping People with Special Needs

Fullname:ICCHP'02: Computers Helping People with Special Needs: 8th International Conference
Editors:Klaus Miesenberger; Joachim Klaus; Wolfgang Zagler
Location:Linz, Austria
Dates:2002-Jul-15 to 2002-Jul-20
Publisher:Springer Berlin Heidelberg
Series:Lecture Notes in Computer Science 2398
Standard No:DOI: 10.1007/3-540-45491-8; ISBN: 978-3-540-43904-2 (print), 978-3-540-45491-5 (online); hcibib: ICCHP02
Papers:155
Pages:789
Links:Conference Website | Online Proceedings
  1. Invited Contributions
  2. Universal Access to Information Society Technologies: Opportunities for People with Disabilities
  3. Computer and Inclusive Education
  4. Virtual Reality
  5. Hearing Impaired People -- Computers and Communication
  6. Computers for the Development of Young Disabled Children
  7. Mobility Impaired People -- Individual Autonomy and HCI
  8. Typing -- Alternative and Augmentative Communication
  9. Accessible Digital Media
  10. Electronic and Virtual Libraries: Access for Print Disabled People
  11. Blind and Visually Impaired People -- Mobility and HCI
  12. Access to Mathematics by Blind Students
  13. Blind People -- Tactile Graphics, Displays, and HCI
  14. Haptic and Audio Interfaces and Virtual Reality for Blind and Partially Sighted People
  15. Blind People -- Human Computer Interaction
  16. Blind People -- Braille Printing
  17. People with Disabilities -- Daily Living
  18. Access Music
  19. People with Disabilities -- Political, Legal, and Individual Aspects
  20. IT-Certficates to Foster the Vocational Integration of People with Disabilities: ECDL® PD
  21. Studying and Academic Mobility -- IT Support for People with Disabilities
  22. International Collaboration to Improve Assistive Technology Outcomes

Invited Contributions

Structured Access to Documents, Digital Talking Books, and Beyond: The DAISY Consortium BIBAFull-Text 1-2
  George Kerscher
Keynote presentation July 18, 2002
eEurope -- eAccessibility -- User Participation: Participation of People with Disabilities and Older People in the Information Society BIBAFull-Text 3-5
  Christian Bühler
The Council of Ministers of the European Union has brought forward the vision to develop the Information Society in Europe for all citizens in Europe to a leading status. The CEU supports the goal in the 5th Framework Programme, with research area IST -- Information Society Technology. Of course is research a very important aspect and driving force in this development, but also other measures are needed. The development of the infrastructure, realisation of borderless interoperability, and support of implementation are also required. This has been realised by European Union and the individual member states. Therefore, they all have started action on national and European level. A common position has been adopted in the eEurope Initiative, which has led to the eEurope action plan 2002. In this action plan concrete targets and timelines have been set in order to support the development of the Information Society in Europe. One direction is the Information Society for all people, and here specific actions are combined in "eAccessibility". eAccessibility is guided by a high level expert group of the member states (ESDIS) and coordinated by DG Employment with support of DG INFSO and other DGs. ESDIS has decided to create an eAccessibility expert working group of experts and/or government representatives from all member states. The eAccessibility started working in January 2001 and is still ongoing. The group has to deal with four targets of the eEurope action plan and has made progress as follows: The adoption of the WAI guidelines has been one mayor achievement of eAccessibility so far.
From Research to Business Improving the Take Up of Results of Research Projects BIBAFull-Text 6-7
  Christian Bühler
Research and Development (R&D) in IT for people with disabilities feels the pressure to bring the results of their projects successfully to the market. R&D in this field, after a pilot period, now must show its impact on practice, on the quality of life of target groups and therefore on related markets. The take up of results of research projects more and more becomes a key issue of any call for proposal for research and development activities. The European Commission for example clearly states in its IST programme that proposals have to show how they can reach this goal.

Universal Access to Information Society Technologies: Opportunities for People with Disabilities

Universal Access to Information Society Technologies: Opportunities for People with Disabilities BIBAFull-Text 8-10
  Constantine Stephanidis; Pier Luigi Emiliani
The Information Society is bringing about radical changes in the way people work and interact with each other and with information, and offers new opportunities to improve the quality of human life. The target user population addressed is broadening, while the availability, type, functionality and content of new products and services is expanding, and access technologies are being diversified. At the same time, however, each new generation of technology has the potential of introducing new difficulties and barriers in the use of products and services -- and eventually in everyday life, new risks for the health and safety of people, and new forms of social exclusion and discrimination.
Accessibility and Usability of eCommerce Systems BIBAFull-Text 11-18
  Keith Gladstone; Cathy Rundle; Tara Alexander
RNIB has had a presence on the web since October 1993, which it has used both to disseminate information and to develop and demonstrate good practice. As an integral part of this work, RNIB launched its Online Shop in March 2002, a practical example of eCommerce tailored to address the needs of both visually impaired customers and their sighted friends and carers. Currently, user access is being significantly enhanced by the addition of a natural language interface as part of the EU funded project 'IMAGINE'. This paper focuses on aspects of both developments that have advanced our understanding of best practice in the area of eCommerce.
Recommending Context-Sensitive and Process-Oriented Tourist Information to the Disabled The PALIO Case BIBAFull-Text 19-26
  Michael Pieper
Aim and ambition of the PALIO project is to provide new information services, directly available for tourists and citizen by developing and implementing complex data systems with user friendly and personalized interfaces. PALIO is sensitive to the tourist needs and makes the organization of touristic stays easier. The system offers services like information on how to move in a visited town, gives hints about available accommodation, parking lots, tourist guides, restaurants, museums, cultural events etc. A certain part of this information is especially related to disabled tourists, e.g. about places which have easy accessibility in terms of entrances, large doors, slides, lifts, toilets, etc.
Web Site Accessibility Auditing Tool for Visually Deficient Persons OCAWA BIBAFull-Text 27-32
  Denis Chêne; Michel Hoël
Accessibility to the Web for the blind and visually impaired is an issue that has become more significant since the introduction of direct manipulation interfaces. The problem can be approached with respect to two complementary points of view: it is possible to act at the beginning of the process, during the creation phase of web pages or it is equally possible to act at the end of the process, on the web pages that already exist. Our contribution to the subject of accessibility is based on the latter point of view. In this document, we will describe an accessibility evaluation tool with a corrective function, based on the following principles: the implementation of a syntactic analysis of html pages, the execution of a first series of accessibility rules based on the document generated by XML, the execution of a second series of more complex rules with the ability to be enriched by the rule server, the production of a report adapted for the user and the continual management of the implementation phase.
User-Centered Interface Design for Disabled and Elderly People: First Experiences with Designing a Patient Communication System (PACOSY) BIBAFull-Text 33-40
  Andreas Holzinger
At the clinical department of Oncology at the Medical University Hospital in Graz, a pilot system for an interactive patient communications system (PACOSY) was examined. The patients are able to retrieve and enter information interactively via a touch screen panel PC connected to the Hospital Intranet. The Interface is designed for patients with little or no computer experience (i.e. people with a low computer literacy or patients with visual impairment and/or restricted motoric ability). This paper reports on the selection of a suitable hardware and on first experiences during the User Centered Design (UCD) and in particular gives insights into problems discovered during experiments with elderly people.
The Disappearing Computer: Emerging Opportunities and Challenges for Disabled and Elderly People BIBAFull-Text 41-48
  Constantine Stephanidis
The emerging technological paradigm of the Disappearing Computer, which is anticipated to radically change the nature, scope, and interactivity of Information Society Technologies, will bring about new opportunities and challenges for the development of an Information Society acceptable by all citizens, including disabled and elderly people. This paper will discuss some of the most important issues in this respect under a Universal Access perspective.
New Technologies and Services for Disabled and Elderly People in the Emerging Information Society BIBAFull-Text 49-57
  Pier Luigi Emiliani
Developments in information technology and telecommunications are supposed to have an important impact on the possibilities of socio-economic integration of the population at large, but are particularly critical for people with disabilities and elderly people. Their impact depends on how technology is made available and accessible to all potential users. This paper discusses some of the challenges that need to be addressed in the context of the emerging Information Society. It does not aim at exhaustively reviewing current developments in technology and foreseeing in detail their likely outcomes, but rather at looking at the emerging situation, trying to figure out the main features of the new information and telecommunication environments that people will have to interact with, and what is needed to make such an environment accessible.
A Strategy to Achieve the Accessibility of Public Web Sites BIBAFull-Text 58-60
  Sylvie Duchateau; Denis Boulay; Claudine Tchang-Ayo; Dominique Burger
At the European and national level, pressure has been made to invite public administrations to make their Web sites accessible to all citizens. This paper reports on the work of the BrailleNet Association together with Web designers of the French government to improve the accessibility of public Web sites. It explains the political context, actions that have been undertaken and the results of these actions. Finally, the perspectives for the future will be discussed.
Accessibility and Affordance for Voice Interactive Systems with the VoiceXML Technology BIBAFull-Text 61-63
  Régis Privat; Nadine Vigouroux; Philippe Truillet; Bernard Oriola
This article deals with the problematic of the oral modality as a mean of interaction, improving the usability of the interactive systems. We will introduce a typology of the systems where the use of speech technologies could benefit the Human-Computer Interaction. Then, we will briefly show some results from a case study based on an evaluation of speech recognition for dictation systems in French, relating to age. We will then lay out the future developments of this research.

Computer and Inclusive Education

Computer and Inclusive Education BIBAFull-Text 64-67
  Ewald Feyerer
Inclusive teachers should be able to reach the special educational needs of all pupils. Computers and Information Technology can facilitate this challenging task. That is why Assistive Technology should be part of inclusive teacher training in any case. This thematic session will show and discuss how computers and information technologies can support and improve inclusive education. Concrete examples of e-learning projects will be presented and discussed as well as the consequences for the teacher training. What can computers information technologies contribute to a modern and flexible study program, what are the indispensable skills teacher trainees will need in order to use computers and new information technologies for an effective inclusive education? Fifteen people will present interesting aspects as basis for the discussion.
National Information and Communication Technology Policies -- Their Impact upon the Use of ICT in Special Needs Education (SNE) BIBAFull-Text 68-75
  Amanda Watkins; Harald Weber
The use of information and communication technology (ICT) is currently very high on the political agendas of nearly all European countries as well as the European Union itself. However, until now, information on the use of ICT in the field of special needs education (SNE) has been limited to National level sources -- very little information has been available at the European level. In order to address this, the European Agency for Development in Special Needs Education has undertaken a major European wide investigation into the use of ICT in SNE in 17 Agency member countries. This has lead to dedicated web-based resource banks of information which aim to present easily accessible information on policies, key issues, examples of interesting and innovate practice, key information sources plus future challenges in the field. This paper focuses upon the findings relating to ICT in SNE policies in the participating countries.
EUN Virtual School Special Needs Education BIBAFull-Text 76-82
  Walter Rainwald
The Virtual School Special Needs Education Editing Team creates a conference with a base of knowledge, which teachers from all over Europe can use and be inspired in their work with children and young people with Special Needs. We are promoting the development of special teaching including the use of ICT.
Tutorial Systems to Teach Standard Applications to the Learning Disabled BIBAFull-Text 83-89
  Michael Pieper
Educationally-conditioned differences in computer use increase dramatically. Technology and society critics in this regard object the progressive informatization of all areas of life to lead to a new social splitting. Like all end-users of computer systems, pupils also approach new application software with different technological experiences and different insight ability. Some need only few minutes, in order to intuitively understand the improved handling possibilities of a new user interface, a new system version, or a completely new application system. Non-intuitive and especially learning disabled pupils need more time. In this regard, first of all further research efforts are required in order to be able to offer ability and talent-adapted help systems and accordingly adapted dialogue interfaces.
The Vickie Project BIBAFull-Text 90-97
  Dominique Archambault; Dominique Burger
This paper provides a general introduction to the Vickie Project, aimed at facilitating the inclusion of visually impaired pupils and students. An unified user interface will allow the pupils and students to access documents with specific devices, and a synchronised graphical display will supply sighted teachers with a view of the same document. A set of tools will allow compatibility with existing school contents and services. This paper describes the general orientations inferred from a users' needs study.
Using Adaptive Hypermedia to Evaluate Basic Arithmetic Skills in Special Education BIBAFull-Text 98-106
  Jaakko Kurhila; Hanna Varjola
An adaptive system Ahmed is designed to serve as an environment for learning in special education. The system has also support for teachers or other experts involved in the education for observing and evaluating the learning processes of individual learners. The paper describes the system and presents the test material for evaluating basic prerequisite skills for learning arithmetics, namely number word sequence skills. The results are reflected against the standard neuropsychological tests.
ICT and Assistive Technology in Teachers Education and Training BIBAFull-Text 107-114
  Ewald Feyerer; Klaus Miesenberger; David Wohlhart
There is a growing recognition that an appropriate up to date preparation of all teachers and other educational personnel working with people with disabilities has to focus on Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and especially on Assistive Technologies (AT). Numerous activities and projects related to teacher education and training have been performed the last years. Also the field of AT made a lot of efforts to towards training an teaching. Often both fields do their own approach to the topic and do not co-ordinate their activities. In this paper activities will be presented to integrate modules on AT into mainstream teacher training programs.
Bridging the Information Gap between IST and SEN -- A Practical Approach on European Level BIBAFull-Text 115-116
  Jørgen Greve; Harald Weber
The presentation addresses the problem that certain groups of learners are at risk of not being fully involved in new ways of learning due to social disadvantages or disability or both. In order to build a socially inclusive Information Society based on participation for all, new pedagogical approaches and appropriate technologies must be developed and applied. However, the two relevant communities, namely IST and SEN, are lacking a common platform to meet and complement each others expertise. The SEN-IST-NET project provides such a platform.
Evaluational Study: Training with Animated Pedagogical Agents BIBAFull-Text 117-124
  Yehya Mohamad; S. Hammer; F. Haverkamp; M. Nöker; H. Tebarth
Training with Multimodal lifelike agent interfaces is a promising new style of training especially fore children with disabilities. In this paper, we present the evaluation results of our training agent system called TAPA (Training with Animated Pedagogical Agents), which has a realistic moving body and body language features. TAPA is web based, it can be accessed via a Web Browser. TAPA allows children to access the training sources over the Internet through a user-friendly multimodal interface similar to natural human communication.
Usage of Modern Technologies -- A Chance for People with Special Needs?! -- Pedagogically Relevant Criteria for the Review of Educational Software Exemplified by "Step by Step 3" BIBAFull-Text 125-127
  Barbara Prazak; Mathilde Niehaus
Educational Software is widely used in the field of special pedagogic to promote the development of people with special needs. In this connection you have to think about the evaluation of educational software for this target group. "Step by Step 3" (working title, now "Mr.Step", a software developed by ARC Seibersdorf research GmbH, aims to be especially suited for the area of cognitive development of children with special needs and for physically handicapped children. Based on theoretical findings and results of our analysis we develop common criteria for the evaluation of educational software from a pedagogical point of view.
Social Innovation in the Information Society -- Take It Easy BIBAFull-Text 128-129
  Cordula Edler
This contribution concentrates on the importance to gain competence in using ITC as a tool. People with special learning needs also need to gain competence in Using ITC in order to access the new learning technologies as soon as possible.
ODL:Inclusive -- Improving Inclusive Teaching through Online Training BIBAFull-Text 130-132
  David Wohlhart
ODL:Inclusive is a Socrates II/Minerva project that aims at improving inclusive education by producing an online introductory course on inclusion based on the eLearning Suite (Hyperwave). This short paper gives an outline of the course and deals with the enhancements to the eLearning Suite that were necessary to provide a full-fledged online teaching and learning environment.
Accessible E-learning: Infrastructure and Content BIBAFull-Text 133-135
  Norman Coombs
E-learning is the fastest-growing technology application in university education and business training. Making these electronic systems accessible to students and faculty with disabilities requires attention both to the courseware infrastructure or learning platform and to the content or subject material that the instructor places in that learning space. Increasing attention is finally being focused on making the courseware accessible. Because most systems are Web-based, this is usually a matter of good Web design and of designing a platform that facilitates faculty designing accessible content. Next, work is needed in assisting faculty to understand and design accessible content and in persuading institutions to develop institution-wide policies to support accessibility to e-learning for students with disabilities.
Addizionario: Words in Your Pocket BIBAFull-Text 136-139
  Giovanna Turrini; Laura Cignoni; Alessandro Paccosi
This paper describes Addizionario, a multilingual hypermedia laboratory for native language learning, addressed to children of nursery and primary schools. The features of the tool, which is child-centred, flexible, easy-to-use and interactive, make it suitable not only for normally skilled users, but also for those presenting more or less severe learning difficulties linked to both physical and cognitive impairment. The software, patented by the Italian National Research Council (C.N.R.), is used in numerous schools in Italy and abroad.

Virtual Reality

Virtual Travel Training for People with Learning Disabilities Accessing Employment Including the Introduction to the Special Thematic Session "Virtual Reality" BIBAFull-Text 140-142
  N. Shopland; J. Lewis; D. J. Brown; H. M. Powell
The purpose of this project is to develop a Virtual Learning Environment to assist in the travel training of a group of people with learning disabilities to enable them to gain access to training and employment opportunities. To achieve this a realistic Virtual Travel in Sutton Package will be developed to assist people with special needs to learn independent travel skills, and to assess the effectiveness of the software in achieving this aim.
Assessing Virtual Reality as a Tool for Support Imagination BIBAFull-Text 143-144
  F. Alcantud; G. Herrera; G. Labajo; I. Dolz; C. Gayá; V. Avila; A. Blanquer; J. L. Cuesta; J. Arnáiz
One of the major developments of the second year of human life is the emergence of the ability to pretend (Leslie, 1987). Many children with autism use no pretend play or are impoverished in the quality of their play (Baron-Cohen, 1989). The key factor of our Virtual Reality Software in relation to Pretend Play is the possibility to really show the object transformations we propose when pretending. We hope those techniques to drive people with autism to a better understanding of pretense and to enable them to develop a play with more quality.
Literacy and Numeracy Edutainment Packages for Disaffected Young Learners BIBAFull-Text 145-146
  D. J. Brown; M. Yazdanparast; J. Lewis; N. Shopland; H. M. Powell
The UK Government has conducted research into skills gaps within the UK population. It has concluded that there is an alarmingly large proportion of the population with low literacy and numeracy skills.
Control of Virtual Environments for People with Intellectual Disabilities BIBAFull-Text 147-149
  P. J. Standen; S. Battersby; T. L. Lannen
Around 25 people in every thousand have mild or moderate intellectual disabilities and about four or five per thousand have severe intellectual disabilities [1]. In theory the distinction between the levels of disability are based on IQ scores but in practice people are assigned to these categories on the basis of the level of support they need with daily living and the presence of challenging behaviour. Although children with mild and moderate learning difficulties are increasingly receiving education in main stream schools, like their more disabled peers, when they leave school they are unlikely to enter employment or to achieve the level of independence expected by the rest of society. Adults with intellectual disabilities will have the option to attend some form of college or day centre, the role of which is to provide training programmes relating to the development of daily living, social and educational skills.
Online Gardening to Promote Social Inclusion BIBAFull-Text 150-152
  S. J. Battersby; N. Kelly; D. J. Brown; H. M. Powell
There are several European initiatives aimed at producing rehabilitation and associated technologies, in response to a strong North American market created through Disability Act Legislation [1]. In the past we have developed projects that provide vocationally based work tutors to teach a range of horticulture, IT, catering and soft skills. These projects include the provision of virtual reality and multimedia based materials to develop the first of these vocational skills -- horticulture.

Hearing Impaired People -- Computers and Communication

Selective Phoneme Spotting for Realization of an /s, z, C, t/ Transposer BIBAFull-Text 153-161
  D. Bauer; A. Plinge; M. Finke
Hearing impaired people with severe sensory deficit urgently need a perception-based replacement for inaudible fricational features of /s, z, C, t/ (beyond NR and speech enhancement) -- to restore high-level breakdown of speech connectedness. Today, shortcomings of past designs can be overcome by digital processing, introducing naturalness and selectivity in the synthetsized stimuli. The ears' lost selectivity may partially be substituted by the functionality of a dedicated phoneme (class) spotter -- based on statistical feature recognition. Subserving transposition, simplified spotting procedures yield sufficient quality of classification, which provides a valid basis for implementation on wearable low-power DSPs of today.
A Multimedia Based Software for Non-Japanese to Learn Japanese Sign Language BIBAFull-Text 162-163
  Flavio Oliveira; Iwao Kobayashi; Mitsumasa Sugawara
We have designed a multimedia based system to teach basic Japanese Sign Language (JSL) to non-Japanese people under the concept of self-learning, through the functions of two modules (a Lesson and a Search module) and extensive use of multimedia. We report the prototype of our system, with which the user can work through a progressive series of lessons, or look up JSL equivalents of English words, and refer to sentence examples and grammar explanations.
The User Interface Design for the Sign Language Translator in a Remote Sign Language Interpretation System BIBAFull-Text 164-165
  Hiroki Minagawa; Ichiro Naito; Nobuko Kato; Hiroshi Murakami; Yasushi Ishihara
In recent years, broadband networks have spread quickly and sufficient communication bandwidth for sign language video communication is now available. Because of this, remote sign language interpretation carried out in real time through networks, from distant locations, is being realized in Japan.
The See-through Head Mount Display as the Information Offering Device for the Hearing Impaired Students BIBAFull-Text 166-167
  Tomoyuki Nishioka
Augmented reality (or Mixed reality) is a natural extension of virtual reality. Information acquired by external sensors is displayed overlap with physical world. This extend human cognition of physical world.
Digital Speech Signal Processing to Compensate Severe Sensory Hearing Deficits: The /s, z, C, t/ Transposer Module in Simulation -- An Overview and Examples BIBAFull-Text 168-169
  D. Bauer; A. Plinge; M. Finke
We start by considering the needs of users who until now cannot receive badly needed technical compensation for their auditory deficit -- because of a lack of efforts to develop special assistive devices for the smaller populations within mainstream industrial development: These patients are characterised by the existence of severe sensory deficits; they are often unable to draw sufficient benefit from conventional hearing aids nor are they candidates for cochlear implants. If we consider the possibilities of residual reception of sensory information within this group -- particularly when the auditory cortex has received good training, substantial chances of improvement of speech reception can be identified -- if current technical shortcomings could be eliminated. Today, unacceptable limits to verbal speech communication exist in too many communication situations. Technical requirements, arising from user needs on the background of users' residual physiological processing, are the starting point of our approach. The goal should be to effectively replace the lost auditory functions by external processing: Not only a compensation of losses in spectral sensitivity and spectral dynamical ranges is required to make feature information audible; we must also direct our attention more specifically to the compensation of losses of selectivity in phonetic cortical pattern recognition. The concept of various technical functions of a "speech processing system", which may be added to hearing aids, are outlined: dedicated technical functionalities are grouped into a "front end", a "baseband processor", a "phonetic-element-replacement module", and a "wireless-coupling to the hearing-aids" unit.

Computers for the Development of Young Disabled Children

Computers for the Development of Young Disabled Children BIBAFull-Text 170-172
  Dominique Archambault
The use of specific user devices, and specific software, may allow disabled people to perform independently some task they could not otherwise. In the case of young children they can be used in the way of stimulating cognitive works to help their development. In this session various experiences conducted with children with various kind of impairments are presented. These experiences are characterised by a few similarities like the importance of focusing on the possibilities of the children instead of the impairment, the necessity to use adjustable and attractive interfaces.
Multimedia Games for Visually Impaired Children BIBAFull-Text 173-180
  Aurélie Buaud; Harry Svensson; Dominique Archambault; Dominique Burger
The TiM project intends to develop and to adapt computer games for visually impaired children. To describe the user's needs is the first step of this project. This analysis will allow us to define two important points: the soft architecture & the authoring tools and the computer Human Interface for children and the resources (audio, tactile,...). This paper presents TiM's approach concerning to human dimension and the advance concerning adapted games.
Technical Assistance for Motor- and Multiple Disabled Children -- Some Long Term Experiences BIBAFull-Text 181-188
  Paul Panek; Christian Beck; Stefan Mina; Gottfried Seisenbacher; Wolfgang L. Zagler
This paper describes the application of a Technical Assistance system developed by the Vienna University of Technology. Main focus has been to provide new means for severely and multiple disabled children in order to support the children's development and to give them more independence and autonomy while exploring their material and social environment. The concept of the system and the experiences collected in practical application of the system in a smart room of an Austrian Support Centre for disabled children are outlined. Based on the encouraging results the system now is also being used in other institutions, in private homes and in higher education in order to enhance independent living of profoundly disabled persons.
The Design of an Adaptive Web Browser for Young Children with Reading Difficulties BIBAFull-Text 189-190
  Chi Nung Chu; Tien Yu Li; Ming Chung Chen
It is hard for the children with reading difficulties to manipulate complex traditional browser to surf and read over the Internet. The Adaptive Web Browser in our design, integrating the technologies of HTML interpreter, convenient human interface design, text-to-speech engine and picture communication symbols, facilitate comprehending the contents in the Internet with auxiliary speaking sound or picture communication symbol produced automatically as needed. This new interactive web browser, however, supplies an opportunity for novel children to learning through the Internet.
Can All Young Disabled Children Play at the Computer? BIBAFull-Text 191-192
  Anita Hildén; Jenny Hammarlund
This poster presentation will give examples of different software, developed in Sweden, used with young disabled children. The result of using this kind of software gives the child an opportunity to play on their own, to bee amused and it also gives the child practice in communication and skill training. The response of the software will keep the child motivated and has to be designed differently according to the developmental level of the child and its possibilities to see and hear the response. There are also a number of environmental and ergonomic factors that are of vital importance when working with young disabled children and software. For many of these children correct seating and physical support is crucial, as the position of the input device.
TL a Language to Create Games for Visually Impaired Children BIBAFull-Text 193-195
  Antoine Dutot; Damien Olivier; Dominique Archambault
In this paper, we present TL, a language for creating games for visually impaired and blind children[1]. This language is a part of the TiM project whose overall aim is to offer to young visually impaired children the possibility to play with computer games.

Mobility Impaired People -- Individual Autonomy and HCI

Power Assist System HAL-3 for Gait Disorder Person BIBAFull-Text 196-203
  Hiroaki Kawamoto; Yoshiyuki Sankai
We have developed the power assistive suit, HAL (Hybrid Assistive Leg) which provide the self-walking aid for gait disorder persons or aged persons. In this paper, We introduce HAL-3 system, improving HAL-1,2 systems which had developed previously. EMG signal was used as the input information of power assist controller. We propose a calibration method to identify parameters which relates the EMG to joint torque by using HAL-3. We could obtain suitable torque estimated by EMG and realize an apparatus that enables power to be used for walking and standing up according to the intention of the operator.
Computer Access Assessment for Persons with Physical Disabilities: A Guide to Assistive Technology Interventions BIBAFull-Text 204-211
  Ting-Fang Wu; Ling-Fu Meng; Hwa-Pey Wang; Wu-Tien Wu; Tien-Yu Li
An innovative flowchart, called the computer access assessment, is proposed for rehabilitative professionals to perform a comprehensive assessment when determining appropriate assistive technology devices for persons with physical disabilities. According to clients special needs, we reconstruct a new computer access assessment with the following four components: (1) seating and positioning needs, (2) keyboard adaptation needs, (3) potential anatomical control site, and (4) mouse adaptation needs. Advices about special equipment needs will be provided when following this flowchart. Two cases have been studied to illustrate how to utilize computer access assessment to assist therapists in selecting appropriating devices and intervention strategies for a given client.
A Proposal of Effective Motion Learning Method Using Sensory Feedback for Walk-Disabled People BIBAFull-Text 212-219
  Junji Ohyama; Yoshiyuki Sankai
In this paper we propose an effective motion learning method using feedback information from sensory nerves at rehabilitation for the people with movement disorder. We tried to verify the validity of the learning procedures using feedback information from a sensory nerve by constructing the computer modeling combining a motor nerve model and a musculo-skeletal model of walk-disabled people. This research will be a guideline at the development of intelligent power assistive system using FES or actuator for relatively severely handicapped people.
Control Method of Walking Speed and Step Length for Hybrid Assistive Leg BIBAFull-Text 220-227
  Masako Nozawa; Yoshiyuki Sankai
For the person having functional disorder in their legs, we have developed Hybrid Assistive Leg (HAL). The purpose of this study is to propose the method to control HAL. In this method, according to human walking, the walking task is divided into phases. Keeping COG be controlled through all phases by manipulating ZMP, it would be possible to generate the stable motions without falling down which have several speeds and step lengths. Using computer simulation, we would confirm the effectiveness of this method and the ability for applying this method to the rehabilitation program for handicapped people.
The Development of Gait Training System for Computer-Aided Rehabilitation BIBAFull-Text 228-235
  Hidetaka Ikeuchi; Satoshi Arakane; Kengo Ohnishi; Keiji Imado; Yukio Saito; Hiroomi Miyagawa
This paper reports on the development of a gait training system and its experimental results. The outstanding feature of the system is the constant dynamic adjustment of the tension lifting the trainee based on the information from floor reaction force. The load on the trainee's foot on the floor is regularly maintained at a low-burden level; therefore, the load on the foot is similar to the effect of walking in a pool. The system was tested on a handicapped person, and improvements in balancing ability were shown.
Accessing Internet Courses by Eye Movement and Head Movement BIBAFull-Text 236-237
  James Gips; Philip A. DiMattia; Marialice Curran; Debra Lees; Maureen Gates
Education of people with very severe physical disabilities -- people who cannot speak and are quadriplegic -- can be greatly facilitated by the internet and by new computer access technologies. Five students between the ages of 17 and 24 have completed courses over the internet using access technologies that allow them to control the mouse pointer on the computer screen by moving just their eyes or head.
The Program for Improving the Working Interfaces and Increasing the Work Competencies of People with Severe Physical Disabilities: The Evaluation, Design, and Training of the Adaptive Computer Devices BIBAFull-Text 238-240
  Tien-yu Li; Ling-Fu Meng; Chien-Huey Sophie Chang; Ming-Chung Chen; Chi-Nung Chu; Arr-Ming Chou; Tony Yang; Chin-Chen Hui; Ai-Chiao Ku; Yun-Lung Lin
Computer access is always a concern due to the fact that computer skills are often listed among the basic requirements for job application. In Taiwan, many people with disabilities do not get job offers because regular computer devices are not designed for their special needs. To help these people, the Adaptive Computer Technology Service Team (ACTST) was established to design and provide individualized needs evaluations and computer skill training. This paper aims to report the results of our efforts and discuss future plans.

Typing -- Alternative and Augmentative Communication

Matching Typing Persons and Intelligent Interfaces BIBAFull-Text 241-242
  Wolfgang L. Zagler
The session will highlight the importance of text production in daily life situations of disabled persons and explain proven and future user interfaces. One of the main goals in present research is the development of highly efficient and effective user interfaces which are perfectly matched to the user needs and abilities. By incorporating intelligent features and know-how from Natural Language Processing a high percentage of redundancy immanent in conventional typing can be avoided thus increasing the speed of text generation.
FASTY -- A Multi-lingual Approach to Text Prediction BIBAFull-Text 243-250
  Johannes Matiasek; Marco Baroni; Harald Trost
Communication and information exchange is a vital factor in human society. Communication disorders severely influence the quality of life. Whereas experienced typists will produce some 300 keystrokes per minute, persons with motor impairments achieve only much lower rates. Predictive typing systems for English speaking areas have proven useful and efficient, but for all other European languages there exist no predictive typing programs powerful enough to substantially improve the communication rate and the IT access for disabled persons. FASTY aims at offering a communication support system significantly increasing typing speed, adaptable to users with different language and strongly varying needs. In this way the large group of non-English-speaking disabled citizens will be supported in living a more independent and self determined life.
Informing Flexible Abbreviation Expansion for Users with Motor Disabilities BIBAFull-Text 251-258
  Tim Willis; Helen Pain; Shari Trewin; Stephen Clark
In this paper we present results and conclusions of an initial study, intended to inform the design of a system to automatically reconstruct full sentences from abbreviated typed text. Such a system will reduce the number of keystrokes that cognitively-unimpaired users with motor disabilities need to input in order to communicate in full, rich language. A number of techniques for abbreviating messages have been identified, based on empirical studies of users. These include vowel deletion, phonetic replacement, and word truncation. How such techniques might be used to support users with motor disabilities is considered and further empirical work proposed.
Cyclic Input of Characters through a Single Button Manipulation BIBAFull-Text 259-266
  Grigori Evreinov; Roope Raisamo
An alternative text-input method is considered as a model for a menu selection task through manipulation by a single button. A traditional seven-segment display element was used as a layout for symbol input and imaging. Each of the segments was lighted in a temporal sequence and the writer could choose the segment by pressing a button. Instead of the button any switch or similar signal may be used, as well as visual imaging may be substituted by sounds. When all segments have been cycled, the result was interpreted as a character according to a set of rules and depending on the character set used. A physically impaired person to control a computer or other electronic device could use the method. The rationale for the design and the results of a preliminary evaluation are presented.
Developing of Predictive Communication System for the Physically Disabled People BIBAFull-Text 267-270
  Vidas Lauruska; Tomas Musteikis
People with impaired mobility, the blind, who have speech difficulties, or who find difficulty in hearing, can become isolated because obtaining information for them from surroundings sometimes is narrow or impossible. It's possible to improve communication possibilities by providing person with appropriate technological help. We have created predictive communication system for physically disabled persons with speech and language impairments. A very important feature of this communication system is that the program is controlled by one on/off switch. Instead of this switch other alternative input devices, such as head pointer, eye blink registrar, person's capacity registrar, suck-blow tube, etc, can be used. Also we are working on computer system, the idea of which is to connect all the house equipment into common control communication network.
Teaching Adolescents with Disabilities to Learn Chinese Keyboarding by Using Multimedia Computer Assisted Input Method Learning System BIBAFull-Text 271-272
  Ming-Chung Chen; Hwa-Pey Wang; Tien-Yu Li
The purposes of this study were to design a multimedia computer assisted input method learning system (McAIML system) and to explore its effectiveness. The McAIML system included three parts; they were roots learning system, assisted learning keyboard, and roots assembling learning system. Three adolescents with physical or cognitive disabilities participated the instruction experiment that designed based on multiple probe single subject design. All these three participants could learn the basic assembling rules of the Da-Yi keyboarding method after the instruction.
Accelerating Assessment with Self-Optimizing Devices BIBAFull-Text 273-275
  Shari Trewin; Patti Slobogin; M. G. Power
Self-optimizing devices are able to adapt themselves to meet their user's needs. This paper presents the Keyboard Optimizer, a self-optimizer for keyboards, and examines its potential within the professional assessment process. The Keyboard Optimizer allows individuals who have difficulty keyboarding to demonstrate their typing, and then offers appropriate operating system configuration settings that could improve keyboarding accuracy. Initial trials in a professional assessment setting suggest that The Keyboard Optimizer could play a useful role in assessment by accelerating the process of evaluating the match between a user and a keyboard. Users themselves liked having adjustments chosen automatically, and found the interface easy to use.
A Proposal of an Evaluation Framework for Writing Assistance Systems: Application to VITIPI BIBAFull-Text 276-278
  Philippe Boissiére; Daniel Dours
We propose an evaluation framework for writing assistance systems. This framework is used to evaluate VITIPI and provide the first results.
Individually Assisted Text Entry with Situational and Contextual Prediction BIBAFull-Text 279-281
  Dirk Clemens; Helmut Heck; Michael Kühn; Olaf Perlick; Frank Reins
The EMBASSI project aims at developing Electronical Multi-Medial Operating and Service Assistance for applications of electronic devices in private, automotive and public environments. -- In order to assist "slow typers" in typing free texts and to speed up text entries in public terminal systems, a text prediction system is being developed that predicts text while the user is slowly writing. The system takes into account application dependent vocabulary, user dependent preferences in writing, and the user specific features of impairment -- dependent Personal Mobile Control Devices (EMMA) with individual user interface layouts.

Accessible Digital Media

Accessible Digital Media BIBAFull-Text 282-283
  Deborah I. Fels
Digital media including audio, video, animation and graphics have an ever-increasing prominence and use in education, on web-sites and even on television.
Methods for Inclusion: Employing Think Aloud Protocol with Individuals Who Are Deaf BIBAFull-Text 284-291
  Vera Roberts; Deborah Fels
Courseware accommodations for individuals who are deaf are examined including translated and hearing video viewing preferences. Within a computer interface, two forms of translated educational video were provided: standard and acted. Think aloud protocol is carried out as part of a usability study of the courseware and its effectiveness as a method for ASL users is considered. There was no influence of translation type on participants' performance on a comprehension test. Trends in the data suggest that individuals find the accommodations worthy of extra cost and are willing to shoulder some of this cost. Preliminary analysis of the verbal reports suggest that sufficient and rich data may be collected from ASL users in a TAP methodology.
Emotive Captioning in a Digital World BIBAFull-Text 292-294
  Charles Silverman; Deborah I. Fels
Traditional closed captioning provides limited bandwidth for verbatim text and sparse background information to reach the viewer. However, the information and richness contained in paralanguage, music, and background sounds is lost to the deaf viewer. The Emotive We are exploring the ways to fill these gaps with the increased bandwidth offered by the new digital media.
Spoken Subtitles: Making Subtitled TV Programmes Accessible BIBAFull-Text 295-302
  Maarten Verboom; David Crombie; Evelien Dijk; Mildred Theunisz
FSB (Federation of Organisations for Visually Impaired People), together with NOS (the public broadcasting-company) and FNB (the Federation of Dutch Libraries for the Blind) have joined forces to improve access to subtitled television programmes. In the Netherlands, many television programmes from foreign countries are available, and these are commonly provided with Dutch subtitles. The Spoken Subtitles initiative makes these subtitle-translated programmes accessible to the visually impaired by creating a service which automatically produces talking subtitles using synthetic speech. The paper describes the conceptual background of the Spoken Subtitle initiative, and outlines the results and the first experiences of the current service.
Accessible Digital Media BIBAFull-Text 303-307
  Deborah I. Fels
The television industry is undergoing the most significant revolution since the origin of the NTSC standard in 1941. Television is without exception the last partner in the communications industry to embrace digital delivery of its transmission signal. The United States (US) and Canada have only recently begun the process of converting to digital transmission while European Union (EU) countries have been working on standards and services for digital and interactive television since 1999.

Electronic and Virtual Libraries: Access for Print Disabled People

Electronic and Virtual Libraries: Access for Print Disabled People BIBAFull-Text 308-311
  Jan Engelen; Dominique Burger
The group of print disabled persons consists of those who cannot use the standard printed material for their information needs because of a visual handicap (low vision, blindness), because of dyslexia or because of a severe motor handicap that makes it impossible to handle books or magazines. Also persons with a severe auditive handicap often prefer sign language information above character-and-word based information. Although more and more persons get used to access electronic documents it is absolutely vital for print disabled persons that the information is made available electronically.
   We will briefly describe the current status in this field and produce a framework in which the ICCHP2002 contributions can be located.
Semantically Rich Markup, Should You Be Agnostic in Your Choice of a Vocabulary BIBAFull-Text 312-315
  George Kerscher
At the end of the 1990's, I thought that it was critically important to have the perfect XML DTD that captured the semantics of a document. However, I have stopped searching for the "perfect vocabulary" and Started to encourage the community to look for the right mechanism to understand a vocabulary and its association to other vocabularies. This paper will briefly review the DTBook DTD, defined by DAISY3, the ANSI/NISO Z39.86-2002 specification and how other vocabularies may be associated with it.
DZB -- A German Library for the Blind Goes Digital BIBAFull-Text 316-320
  Thomas Kahlisch
The paper describes our approach to turn the talking book production of DZB, the oldest library for the blind in Germany, into the digital world. The digital world for blind and visually impaired persons has a common name: DAISY (Digital Access Information System) is a standard and technology, which has to be developed, as a powerful tool, to produce accessible multimedia documents [1].
   In a five-year time frame, DZB turns the production, archival and distribution process into a high technology level. The presentation describes:
  • How we will convert analogue tapes into a digital format [2].
  • How staff members learn to produce digital magazines and to structure books.
  • What kind of equipment is necessary in this process? The main focus of this work is, to improve the access for blind people to information and provide them, with new technology, which is designed for all.
  • Harmonisation of the Copyright Law throughout the European Union -- A Challenge for All Print Disabled People BIBAFull-Text 321-328
      Ruth Hammerschmid; Klaus Miesenberger; Bernhard Stöger
    On May 22, 2001 the European Parliament and the European Council launched the "Directive on the Harmonisation of Certain Aspects of Copyright and Related Rights in the Information Society" [1]. This paper wants to stress the importance of this directive for print disabled people in all European countries. The directive on the one hand is a chance to guarantee access to the information society -- a thing all other citizens take for granted. On the other hand, the lobbying pressure of the publishing industry may cause more difficulties in the future. Following the directive, it is up to the national legislation to decide on exceptions and special paragraphs to take the needs of groups like print disabled people into account. This paper will present the most important aspects of the directive form the point of view of service providers for print disabled students. "integrated studying" is an Austria wide service provider for print disabled students who has managed to get more than 80% of the documents which have to be prepared for print disabled students in digital formats. Further on, this paper will review activities throughout Europe and outline activities how international exchange could and should support the lobbying at national level.
       As a concrete example, the situation in Austria will be discussed: We shall outline the most important regulations of Austrian Copyright that are relevant for disabled users. Next, we shall closer discuss those aspects of the Directive that concern access to works for the print disabled. Finally, we shall present a proposal how a non-discriminating implementation of the Directive into Austrian Copyright Law could look like.
    A Distributed Document Oriented Architecture for Rendering Services to Visually Impaired Students BIBAFull-Text 329-336
      Claude Moulin; Sylvain Giroux; Dominique Archambault; Davide Carboni; Dominique Burger
    This document presents the elements of a flexible architecture that allow delivery of services adapted to visually impaired students. Services are published in a service portal so that they can be found from any station of an intranet. The architecture is open because it is possible to add new resources and services to the system without modifying any component. It is flexible because although foreseen for a distributed environment, it is possible, with some restrictions, to adapt it to a local environment. Sharing a common model, the services do not deal individually with the user's device but supply declarative knowledge that the system user interface interprets.
    ABA's Virtual Library Services for Blind and Visually Impaired People BIBAFull-Text 337-344
      Karim Taha; Lori Stefano Pertucci
    Today, Internet technology provides a multitude of low-cost solutions for small organizations to become on-line services providers. On the other hand, advances in assistive equipment and software interfaces expanded the opportunities for blind and visually impaired people to communicate and access information via Internet. In this context, the ABA conducted a pilot project with the aim to offer on-line library services to its beneficiaries. Several issues have been raised during this project concerning digital content production, access, protection and distribution via Internet.
    Libbraille: A Portable Library to Easily Access Braille Displays BIBAFull-Text 345-352
      Sébastien Sablé; Dominique Archambault
    The TiM project intends to develop and to adapt computer games for visually impaired children. In order to achieve this project a library which allows to easily access Braille displays was developed. This library provides all the functions needed to write text on the Braille display, directly raise Braille dots as well as receive the keys pressed on it. On top of that this library works with many different types of displays and is freely reusable.
    CYNTHIA: An HTML Browser for Visually Handicapped People BIBAFull-Text 353-359
      Mathieu Raynal; Mathieu Serrurier
    This paper deals with an Html browser for visually impaired people, named Cynthia. After a short description of the principle and techniques of interaction, we present the two conception approaches of the intern structure of this browser: the first one integrates VoiceXML and a structure for the visual information. The other one is based on a chained structure allowing both the interaction and the presentation of information. We compare these two approaches and give the results in terms of conception and time.
    A Secure Internet Service for Delivering Documents for the Blind BIBAFull-Text 360-365
      Benoit Guillon; Dominique Burger; Bruno Marmol
    The access to written information is essential for the inclusion of individuals in modern societies. At school, at work it is an important success factor. At home it is source of pleasure and cultural development. In this paper we describe a service that has been developed to improve the cooperation between the different actors involved in producing an distributing books in alternate formats for visually impaired persons.
    Virtual Libraries Initiatives with Usable Results for Print Disabled People BIBAFull-Text 366-373
      Marco Köttstorfer; Klaus Miesenberger
    Digitization is one key objective at the beginning of the information society. More and more efforts are spent to make documents usable on computers and via the Internet. This also addresses a major need of print disabled people. Access to documents in digital format is the prerequisite to be able to apply assistive technology to get access to documents at the Human Computer Interface (HCI). This paper presents the initiative "Austrian Literature Online" (ALO) and how this project addresses the needs of print disabled people. A virtual library system was developed for presentation and preservation purposes of old and rare literature. This system and the documents handled are designed according to the needs of print disabled people. Till now copyright free literature has been made available in accessible formats. The system is also developed further to provide blind and visually handicapped students a convenient access to study literature. Other projects following the ALO initiative extended the project that the corpus of materials that will be available in the Document Management System (DMS) will increase dramatically in the next years. [1]
    Unlocking Doors: Building an Accessible Online Information Node BIBAFull-Text 374-381
      David Crombie; Arne Leeman; Marian Oosting; Maarten Verboom
    Strategies for enhancing access to information for the print disabled have increasingly focused on web-based information delivery. In the Netherlands, a major initiative is underway to construct an on-line information node which will act as a 'one-stop shop' for end-users. The underlying architecture of the portal is based on a modular design which can be easily extended and adapted to changing needs where required. Integrating advanced internet technologies with the latest accessibility standards, it has been possible to take full advantage of the flexibility provided by XML content creation. By offering personalised interfaces, users are able to access daily newspapers, magazines and eventually DAISY-compliant electronic books. This is achieved with a specially built XML viewer. Furthermore, by using the sophisticated navigation template facilities, it is possible to offer content hosting to external support organisations and significantly to enhance the accessibility of their information as well. Initial feedback is presented and suggestions made for future development and co-operation.
    Using XML as a Reading Enabler for Visually Impaired Persons BIBAFull-Text 382-389
      Bert Paepen; Jan Engelen
    Reading large texts like books, newspapers and magazines, is still a hard task for visually impaired persons. Accessibility software such as screen readers and screen magnifiers are a valuable aid, but they give the reader only small parts of information at a time. Since XML (Extensible Mark-up Language) can add structure to information, it can be used to help visually impaired readers cope with large amounts of information. A special XML Viewer application can give the reader additional navigation and search possibilities, enabling a personalised and fast reading experience for visually impaired persons.
    The Accessibility of Online Library Resources for People with Print Disabilities: Research and Strategies for Change BIBAFull-Text 390-397
      Axel Schmetzke
    As more and more learning in higher education takes place in cyberspace, the accessibility of online resources to all people, including those with disabilities, has become an important issue. This paper reviews the research on the accessibility of library web sites and selected online information resources, and it discusses the role that future research should play in facilitating an inclusive learning environment.
    Quick Access to Dictionaries for Blind and Visually Impaired People BIBAFull-Text 398-400
      Brasseur Vincent; Mohamed Slimane; Nicole Vincent; Dominique Burger
    Editors publish more and more electronic books on CDR or online. Generally, they use their own databases to create the web pages. But this pages are often not or badly adapted to visually impaired (frames, use of columns...). We propose a tool that use those databases to create accessible web pages for visually impaired readers.
    Perspectives and Possibilities for the Automated Processing of Scientific Texts for Blind and Visually Impaired People BIBAFull-Text 401-402
      Gerhard Jaworek
    In this presentation I would like to point out the possibilities which could be open to us in using XML for producing electronic texts for this target group. In XML you can describe how a document's formating should be presented.
       This means that a document which is written in XML could be transfered in an optimised form for reading with a braille display, in an optimised form for visually impaired or in a form which is suitable to be read by a computer's voice output.
       I want to show the most important qualities of XML. A greater part of this presentation will be a generalisation of the problem. The disadvantages of the systems used traditionally shall be compared with the advantages of XML.
    Universal Usability Issues of Textual Information Structures, Commands, and Languages of Native Visually Challenged Users: An Inclusive Design Framework BIBAFull-Text 403-405
      Basawaraj Patil; Klaus Maetzel; Erich J. Neuhold
    Current textual languages (e.g., textual information structures, command and query languages, and programming languages) are neither accessible nor adaptable to the computing requirements of native visually challenged users. In this paper, we identify semantic, syntactic, linguistic and cognitive issues and accessibility factors at various level of human-computer interaction and proposes a inclusive, universal design framework, that enables not only linguistically handicapped users but also visually challenged users to command and operate computers, and learn programming.
    Accessible Interface Design: Adaptive Multimedia Information System (AMIS) BIBAFull-Text 406-412
      Marisa DeMeglio; Markku T. Hakkinen; Hiroshi Kawamura
    This paper provides an overview of the concepts and design of the Adaptive Multimedia Information System (AMIS). AMIS is a software application for the playback of natively accessible content (DAISY and DAISY/NISO books), and of accessibly authored HTML pages. DAISY playback includes support for SMIL elements and the Navigation Control Center. AMIS retrofits HTML documents with a navigation overlay that enables accessible presentation through synthesized speech, large print, and Braille renderings. AMIS employs a flexible XML-based architecture that allows for adaptation of the standard interface to meet the needs of both users and assistive technologies. The mutable application interface allows it to adapt to user preference, content delivery mode, and assistive device capabilities. Users may customize font size, color contrast, spacing, volume, playback speed, and presence/absence of interface regions. Core interface features are derived from both the DAISY playback model and the W3C User Agent Accessibility Guidelines. AMIS XML documents describe application components (controls, content layout regions, dialogs, content renderings) aurally, textually, and visually. The default application interface allows for visual and aural output; and touchscreen, mouse, and keyboard input. Through the use of the AMIS Plug-in SDK, developers can write interfaces to a variety of assistive devices. These devices can gain access to the same application functionality and content as does the native interface. Localization is also very easily obtainable in AMIS, because every aspect of the interface is customizable. Labels on buttons and regions are all imported directly from the system's Interface Markup documents. The plug-in architecture allows for the addition of new input methods, to accommodate techniques such as IME (Input Method Editor generally used for East Asian languages) and on-screen keyboards. The adaptable interface framework and the content rendering capabilities, coupled with the use of open standards, enables the customization or addition of features to meet a broad range of user requirements.
    Reading Multimedia Documents BIBAFull-Text 413-420
      Helen Petrie; Gerhard Weber
    Multimedia titles use technology which offers a good basis for use by print-disabled people. However, lack of appropriate document structures and difficulties in navigating multimedia titles limits the readership. We propose a new approach to design of multimedia documents by separating contents from interaction techniques while using XML standards. From these XML-based documents and their mapping the final multimedia title can be generated using industry standards.

    Blind and Visually Impaired People -- Mobility and HCI

    Comparison of Various Interface Modalities for a Locomotion Assistance Device BIBAFull-Text 421-428
      Yacine Bellik; René Farcy
    We have developed a triangulating laser telemeter adapted to the space perception for the blind: the "Teletact". Two parts compose the "Teletact".] The first part is a laser telemeter, which detects the distances to obstacles, and the second one is an interface, which presents these distances to the blind user. The "Teletact" was developed originally with an auditive interface. Due to the long time training required by this interface we have tested some new interfaces based on other modalities (tactile and force feed-back). In this paper, we present all these interfaces and discuss them.
    Providing Help for Visually Impaired People's Navigation in an Urban Environment Using GPS BIBAFull-Text 429-436
      Vivien Guillet; Beatrice Rumpler; Jean-Marie Pinon
    The goal of our project ("Ouvej") is to conceive and realize a navigation helping system for disabled, and more specifically visually impaired people, designed around a Global Positioning System (GPS). In this article, we firstly describe the general situation of navigation in an urban environment for disabled people and the context in which our project takes place. Then we describe the global architecture of the project and the prototype that has already been built. In the third part, we clarify the expected profits of using User Modeling (UM) and Case Based Reasoning (CBR) techniques and then describe our user model. Finally, we indicate our plans and future works.
    New Trends and Developments in Computer and Internet Technology for Visually Impaired People: A Survey and Usefulness in the Arab Sub-region BIBAFull-Text 437-444
      AbdulMalik S. Al-Salman
    The wide spread application and rapid revolution of computers and Internet technology has made the use of them a must for many people including people with disabilities. This paper presents the new trends and developments in both computers and Internet technology aimed as aid to visually impaired people in general and the Arabic-speaking in particular. The developments include the various input and output devices used in conjunction with computers, the various software packages designed for the visually impaired, and the various ways through which they can communicate via the Internet.
    Auditory Emotional Access to Visual Information BIBAFull-Text 445-447
      Harald Schwende
    Seeing a picture and developing feelings for this is nearly impossible for blind persons. There isn't any system to reveal an emotional access to pictures for those persons. Surveys showed that it is very important for blind to transport emotions independently of the content especially for modern images. These emotions shall correlate with the feelings of seeing people. This sonification system enables an emotional access using the similarity of feeling by watching a picture or hearing music and transforming visual information in music compositions. Results of psychological, physiological and emotional acoustic researches, methods of image analysis and the rules of music composition are basis for this translation. After digitalization and image analysis, the presented system generates new data for the generation of synthetic music. The complete process takes the necessary aspects of the auditory and visual perception into account. A first version has already been developed and tested.
    Auditory Sensation Aided Image Perception: Integration of Somesthetic Sense of Fingertip Position BIBAFull-Text 448-454
      Yoshihiko Nomura; Sayuri Nishihama; Tokuhiro Sugiura; Hirokazu Matsui; Norihiko Kato
    A color image presentation system with sound via touch-panel interface was developed and some perceptual characteristics with the system were studied in this paper. Each subject actively operates his/her fingertip on the touch panel interface, and the system returns syllable sounds corresponding to the colors nearby the fingertip position. Without sight, he/she perceives images through the sound information together with the fingertip positional sense. The authors carried out some preliminary psychophysical experiments on the human perceptual characteristics in converting speech sounds into image patterns and on the fingertip positional sense. Based on the results of the preliminary experiments, the authors developed a color image presentation system. It was confirmed through experiments using the system that the subjects were able to perceive the shapes of simple closed polygonal figures within 2 or 3 minutes.
    A Novel Application to Aid Low Vision Computer Users BIBAFull-Text 455-462
      Luciano Silva; Olga Regina Pereira Bellon
    This paper presents a novel application to help people with low vision disabilities and to allow the use of the computer. The application was initially designed to aid Web navigation, but it can also be useful to other computer applications. We describe the importance of the Web as source of information and knowledge and explain the main difficulties that disabled people have to access Web pages. We have chosen the most well-known accessibility tools of two different operating systems (Microsoft Windows and LINUX) to explain their features and limitations. Finally, the developed application tool, named MouseLupe, its characteristics and main contributions are presented in details.
    Visually Impaired Persons Using Microsoft PowerPoint Presentations BIBAFull-Text 463-468
      Martin Jung; Erdmuthe Meyer zu Bexten
    This paper deals with the experiences of the visually impaired students of computer science of our institute with Microsoft Power Point and how to improve the usability by customizing the screen reader JAWS. New opportunities and restrictions for visually handicapped persons will be discussed. Typical scenarios and some of the occurring problems to be solved will be shown.
    Using MS Office Features as Low Vision Accessibility Tools BIBAFull-Text 469-470
      Deborah Gilden
    Standard features in MS Office can be used to enhance the appearance of text and graphics images, and thereby provide visual screen access to people with low vision. Although not designed to be accessibility tools, these features can be more useful than Windows accessibility features. This easy, no-cost approach permitted a college student with extremely limited vision to switch from using the computer as a blind person, to accessing it well enough visually to be able to make schematic drawings by using a mouse.

    Access to Mathematics by Blind Students

    Access to Mathematics by Blind Students BIBAFull-Text 471-476
      Arthur I. Karshmer; Chris Bledsoe
    Access to, and doing mathematics, is one of the biggest obstacles for blind students in school and at the university. Our special thematic session (STS) will present new approaches to offering blind students better access to mat, to provide new tools for doing math and offer support tools to math teachers to help them offer better instruction to blind students. In the remainder of this short paper, the basic problems and historical solutions to the problem are discussed as a means of laying the groundwork for our STS.
    Architecting an Auditory Browser for Navigating Mathematical Expressions BIBAFull-Text 477-485
      Arthur I. Karshmer; Gopal Gupta; Doug Gillan
    Understanding and internalizing complex mathematical expressions is a difficult task for visually impaired students. We present the design of an auditory browser, currently under development, for browsing complex mathematical expressions via audio. The architecture of the browser is influenced by experiments performed to study the perceptual and cognitive processes involved in reading mathematical expressions. The auditory browser is interactive and facilitates aural navigation of mathematical expressions. The characteristics of the browser along with its implementation are discussed in this paper.
    REMathEx -- Reader and Editor of the Mathematical Expressions for Blind Students BIBAFull-Text 486-493
      Pavel Gaura
    The project REMathEx is developed at the Faculty of Informatics, Masaryk University, Brno as a support for blind students allowing them to study complex mathematical expressions. The system uses the combination of the braille display and the speech synthesis outputs to provide the user with all the information concerning studied mathematical expressions. The basic principles of the system and its use are described in the paper.
    Speaking Technical Documents: Using Prosody to Convey Textual and Mathematical Material BIBAFull-Text 494-501
      D. Fitzpatrick
    Though Braille is the most common means whereby blind people can access information of any kind, it is rapidly being superseded by spoken versions of the same material. Owing to the bulky nature of Braille, the ability to transport a small portable computer, rather than multiple volumes of a book has far greater appeal. However, to date the monotonous nature of synthetic speech has meant that both highly technical information, and the more visually oriented presentational styles (such as mathematics) have been largely inaccessible to blind people. While the ability to approximate human prosody is apparent in some synthesisers, these features are not utilised by the developers of screen-access software. Consequently, the ability to present anything other than purely textual material is distinctly lacking in this type of software. This lack ensures that blind students and professionals working in the scientific or technical arena are to a great extent prevented from reading large amounts of relevant material.
       This paper describes a model of verbalising mathematics using spoken audio. The language of written mathematics can be translated in to an English representation based on the grammatical structures inherent in the language. The model discussed here encapsulates the structure of an equation in the most intuitive form of communication available; natural speech, while the content is enhanced by the use of alterations in the prosody (inflection) of the voice. It concludes with a discussion of some current areas of investigation. These include the application of certain acoustic affects to the speech signal to convey auditorily, those visual cues so readily apparent from the spatially oriented layout of mathematical content.
    Access by Blind Students and Professionals to Mainstream Math and Science BIBAFull-Text 502-507
      John A. Gardner
    The Oregon State University Science Access Project has developed computer technologies providing access to math and science information for people with print disabilities. The Accessible Graphing Calculator (AGC) is a Windows application that can display graphs through an audio tone plot. The Tiger Tactile Graphics and Braille Embosser is a true WYSIWYG Windows "printer for the blind" that embosses graphics as variable height gray-scale images and can emboss text as braille. The WinTriangle self-voicing RTF scientific word processor is under development but already used to create information readable by blind people and sighted scientists. The new Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) web graphics language is ideal for creating extremely accessible graphics of great complexity. These are viewed by blind people with the Accessible SVG Viewer and a tactile copy. The Tiger, WinTriangle, and the ASVG Viewer are becoming user interfaces to HTML/mathML, SVG -- a monumental breakthrough to truly equal access.
    LATEX at the University of Applied Sciences Giessen-Friedberg -- Experiences at the Institute for Visually Impaired Students BIBAFull-Text 508-509
      Erdmuthe Meyer zu Bexten; Martin Jung
    This paper deals with our approach to use LATEX as a mathematical notation for our visually impaired students of computer science at our university. The way we use LATEX, how it is taught to the students, possibilities and limitations will be discussed.
    Experience with Access to Mathematics for Blind Students in Slovakia BIBAFull-Text 510-511
      Martina Kobolkova; Peter Lecky
    After entering the school, children have to learn how to receive, manipulate with and transfer information in a certain way. Here we can see a beginning of unified symbolic language at school, which is developed systematically on the way to university.
    Infty Alpha Test Site BIBAFull-Text 512-513
      Toshihiro Kanahori; Masakazu Suzuki
    This paper introduces a new experimental system on the web. This system provides some functions of our document reader system of scientific documents including mathematical formulae, named Infty [1], via the Internet. The system recognizes page images of clearly printed mathematical documents uploaded by a user, and outputs the recognition results in LATEX and HTML. The user can download them from the site. The system will be able to output them in Unified Braille Code and AMS (ASCII Mathematik Schrift) in the near future.
    Designing an AutoMouse to Promote Computer Accessibility for People with Severe Physical Impairments BIBAFull-Text 514-516
      Ming Chung Chen; Tien Yu Li; Chi Nung Chu; Ling Fu Meng; Chien-Huey Sophie Chang; Arr Mien; Chou T; Tony Yang; Chih Chen Hui; Ai Chiao Ku; Yun Lung Lin
    Accessing computers is a difficult task for people with severe physical disabilities, even though they are equipped with an alternate mouse. The purpose of this study was to design an AutoMouse for the clients with severely physical impairments including those who are with amyotropic lateral sclerosis (ALS), cervical spinal cord injury (SCI), and muscular dystrophy (MD). Through the use of AutoMouse, a click free operation environment was provided to the users. The results indicated that the client, when using the AutoMouse, had easier access to computers.

    Blind People -- Tactile Graphics, Displays, and HCI

    Evaluation of Long Descriptions of Statistical Graphics for Blind and Low Vision Web Users BIBAFull-Text 517-526
      H. K. Ault; J. W. Deloge; R. W. Lapp; M. J. Morgan; J. R. Barnett
    The objective of this research was to maximize not only accessibility but also user comprehension of web pages, particularly those containing tabular and graphical information. Based on literature and interviews with blind and low vision students and their teachers, the research team developed guidelines for web developers to describe charts and graphs commonly used in statistical applications. A usability study was then performed to evaluate the effectiveness of these new guidelines. Accessibility and comprehension for both blind and low vision users were increased when web pages were developed following the new guidelines.
    A Tactile Display System Equipped with a Pointing Device -- MIMIZU BIBAFull-Text 527-534
      Makoto Kobayashi; Tetsuya Watanabe
    A tactile display system equipped with a pointing device has been developed. The system, named MIMIZU, has a stylus pen and a body containing tactile display units. The stylus pen and the body are connected with three links and three angular sensors. Using the system, visually impaired users can draw and erase tactile images. It is effective not only for tactile drawing, but also as an interactive multimedia displaying method. If the user points to arbitrary positions over the tactile image, the system can feedback to the user a kind of tactile or acoustic reactions like vibrating pins, changing the tactile image, playing a sound, and so on. It means that MIMIZU has good possibility to give effective educational materials and enjoyable entertainment to visually impaired people.
    Preparing Tactile Graphics for Traditional Braille Printers with BrlGraphEditor BIBAFull-Text 535-536
      Mario Batusic; Franz Urban
    This poster presents a new WYSIWYG editor for tactile graphics developed by Franz Urban in the framework of his diploma theses in computer sciences at the institute i³s³ Johannes Kepler University of Linz, Austria.
       The editor is designed as a research tool for investigating an appropriate production technique for the paper printed tactile graphics.
    TeDUB: A System for Presenting and Exploring Technical Drawings for Blind People BIBAFull-Text 537-539
      Helen Petrie; Christoph Schlieder; Paul Blenkhorn; Gareth Evans; Alasdair King; Anne-Marie O'Neill; George T. Ioannidis; Blaithin Gallagher; David Crombie; Rolf Mager; Maurizio Alafaci
    Blind people can access and use textual information effectively in a variety of ways -- through Braille, audiotape or computer-based systems. Access and use of graphic information is much more problematic, with tactile versions both time-consuming and difficult to make and textual descriptions failing to provide independent access to the material. The TeDUB Project is developing a system which will automatically generate descriptions of certain classes of graphics (electronic circuit diagrams, UML diagrams and architectural plans) and allow blind people to explore them independently. This system has great potential in work, education and leisure domains to open up independent access to graphic materials for blind people.
    Improvement of User Interface for Blind PC Users BIBAFull-Text 540-542
      Yutaka Shimizu; Masami Shinohara; Hideji Nagaoka; Yasushige Yonezawa
    An application by which blind users can operate two tactile devices by themselves was developed. Laboratory assessment showed the possibility to transmit certain kinds of non-textual information.

    Haptic and Audio Interfaces and Virtual Reality for Blind and Partially Sighted People

    Haptic Perception of 2D Pictures and 3D Objects: Accurate Mental Representation as a Function of Visual Status BIBAFull-Text 543-550
      Helen Graupp; Keith Gladstone; Leanne Thompson
    In two experiments, participants of varying visual status explored tactile diagrams and 3D objects. Congenitally blind participants were poorer at identifying tactile diagrams haptically than adventitiously blind and blindfolded sighted people. Tactile picture recognition benefits from visual knowledge, experience and imagery. In another study blind and blindfolded sighted participants explored 3D objects with two fingers and restricted cutaneous feedback. Whether meaningful information can effectively be gleaned by force-feedback alone is questionable and raises doubts about devices enabling blind people to explore objects in virtual environments with current technology.
    Microelectrical Mechanical Systems Actuator Array for Tactile Communication BIBAFull-Text 551-558
      Eniko T. Enikov; Kalin V. Lazarov; Gilbert R. Gonzales
    Tactile perception of alpha-numerics is possible using a tactile illusion (TI). The illusory sensation of motion is produced by mechanical actuators applying points of pressure on the skin. Vibrating points induce a nonveridical perception of motion from point to point. Intact lemniscal and parietal cortex are necessary for perception of the TI and can be used as a neurophysiological testing tool and an additional human-machine communication channel. We describe a 4 x 5 actuator array of individual vibrating pixels for fingertip tactile communication. The array utilizes novel micro-clutch MEMS technology. Individual pixels are turned ON and OFF by pairs of microscopic thermal actuators, while the main vibration is generated by a vibrating piezo-electric plate. Physiological parameters required for inducing TI and the fabrication sequence for the thermal micro-actuators along with actuation results are presented. Fingertip perception of micro-actuators could be built into a variety of data acquisition interfaces for handicapped persons.
    Designing Interactive Tactile Diagrams BIBAFull-Text 559-561
      Ben Challis
    Tactile diagrams are relatively easy to produce yet there are no standard guidelines to assist during the design process. Attempting to include as much information as possible can lead to diagrams that are simply too confusing to be of use. Research into a previous project on non-visual access to music notation (Weasel) has shown that an interactive multimodal approach to presentation could be of benefit in these circumstances. A set of design principles to assist with this process is discussed.
    3D Audio in the 21st Century BIBAFull-Text 562-564
      Damian T. Murphy; Michael C. Kelly; Anthony I. Tew
    3D audio is concerned with the artificial construction and playback of realistic and stable sound images within a Virtual Auditory Space and has been shown to be useful within the context of the human computer interface. This paper examines some of the issues informing current research in 3D audio and personalised, binaural sound, highlighting potential problems and discussing solutions and future directions for this work.
    Going Places with "KnowWare": Virtual Reality Maps for Blind People BIBAFull-Text 565-567
      Myron W. Krueger; Deborah Gilden
    Through a combination of gesture input with audio output, the KnowWare™ system offers blind users a new way to access spatial information. An invisible virtual map is defined on the desktop. When the user "touches" a feature on the map with the tip of an index finger, the computer identifies that feature via generated speech or synthesized sound codes. "Touching" (merely placing the finger on a virtual feature that cannot be seen or felt) is detected by means of an overhead video camera that looks down at the user's hands as they rest upon the desktop. Because KnowWare™ is an electronic medium, it can instantly zoom in on a particular country to display it in more detail. The twenty blind subjects who have tested KnowWare™ were able to use it for most tasks as well as they do traditional raised-line maps.

    Blind People -- Human Computer Interaction

    Mental Models of Blind Users in the Windows Environment BIBAFull-Text 568-574
      Sri Hastuti Kurniawan; Alistair Sutcliffe
    The study investigates blind computer users' mental models in Windows environments through interviews and user observation. Five blind users described their strategies in dealing with a new Windows application. The study showed that blind users had similar and highly structured strategies. They adopted three stages of strategy: exploration, task-action and configuration. Blind users were also observed to have three types of mental models of the Windows environment: structural, functional or a combination of these two models. Users have more problems in using a new application when there is a mismatch between the user's established mental model and the way the application works.
    An Approach to Producing New Languages for Talking Applications for Use by Blind People BIBAFull-Text 575-582
      D. G. Evans; K. Polyzoaki; P. Blenkhorn
    This paper describes an approach that allows text-to-speech synthesisers to be produced for new languages for use with assistive applications. The approach uses a simple rule-based text-to-phoneme stage. The phonemes are passed to an existing phoneme-to-speech system for another language. We show that the match between the language to be synthesised and the language on which the phoneme-to-speech system is important for the perceived quality of the speech but not necessarily the understandability of speech.
    User Requirements for Technologies for Personal Communication and Information Use for Deafblind People BIBAFull-Text 583-584
      Wendy Fisher; Helen Petrie
    There are an estimated 130,000 deafblind people in the European Union. Although a range of specialist technologies for personal communication and information use have been developed for this user group, but these do not meet the range of users needs. To better understand the needs of this user group, interviews were conducted with thirteen deafblind people. These interviews revealed the urgent need for innovative technologies to enable deafblind people to communicate more independently with others and to use information. A portable, robust system that also allows use of residual sight or hearing is required. This project is currently developing early prototypes to explore new technological possibilities for such a device.
    Project IPSIS -- Web Portal and Linux for the Blind BIBAFull-Text 585-586
      Danko Butorac
    Open-source and web technologies open a new approach in aiding the blind, as well as building assistive technology for blind users. Through IPSIS project in last 2 years this became a fact for blind people in Croatia. IPSIS project offers open-source solutions for building end-user computer system as well as web accessibility. Linux distribution was used for purpose of making free, complete software solution for the blind. Many open-source applications have been integrated in this solution, but some adaptations have been made in area of speech synthesis (Croatian language), and interface design. Designing a web-portal, an open-source solution was used once again. The portal is working on a Linux web-server, MySQL database and PHP-based administration. The Talking Linux for the Blind (TLB), and web-portal for the blind people make an integrated, easy to use solution for blind Croatian computer users.
    An Analysis of Layout Errors in Word Processed Documents Produced by Blind People BIBAFull-Text 587-588
      T. Diggle; S. Kurniawan; D. G. Evans; P. Blenkhorn
    This paper reports the initial results of an ongoing project concerned with the formatting of documents for blind people. It presents an analysis of formatting and layout errors for two corpora of, in total, 155 documents from 46 authors.
    Windows Screen Reader User Survey in Japan BIBAFull-Text 589-590
      Tetsuya Watanabe; Chuji Sashida; Shinichi Okada
    We conducted a Windows screen reader user survey to gather information on Windows accessibility by blind and visually impaired PC users in Japan. Its results show that nearly half of respondents were using more than one screen reader. As for hardware, half of them were using scanners and one sixth of them Braille printers and Braille displays at workplaces. As for software, more than half of respondents were using word processors or editors, e-mail software, voiced Internet browsers, spreadsheets, CD-ROM dictionary viewers, and OCR software. The commonest problem respondents faced when they learned Windows was that Windows was hard to comprehend.
    Tools for Creating Documents in 'Preferred Format' for Visually Impaired People BIBAFull-Text 591-593
      D. G. Evans; P. Blenkhorn
    A suite of tools is described that allow a word-processor operator to produce documents in large print, Braille and on cassette tape so that the documents can subsequently be read by visually impaired or blind users. The tools integrate with Microsoft Word, are written in Visual Basic for Applications and make use of the Word Object Model.

    Blind People -- Braille Printing

    Braille Printing System BIBAFull-Text 594-601
      Shunsuke Hara; Ryoko Kawamitsu; Kanako Kusunoki; Hiroshi Sato; Mamoru Fujiyoshi
    It is believed that for the newly blind, to use large size Braille is more effective than to use that of standard size in practising Braille recognition. On the other hand, it may be preferable to use small size Braille for young blind children. Taking account of these facts, we have developed a "size-variable Braille printing system", which can produce Braille of arbitrary size on swell paper (micro-capsule paper). Our system takes, as input data, the same input data as that for Braille printers and produces a LATEX file to typeset Braille image as output data. This system can be applied to more general representations of Braille text since it is possible to draw symbols other than Braille on the paper. In this research, two-dimensional expression of fractions in Braille is presented.
    Braille Contractions in WinBraille BIBAFull-Text 602-609
      Mats Blomquist
    WinBraille is a free program containing Windows drivers for Index Braille embossers, emboss-direct macros for famous Windows programs like Microsoft Word, a built-in editor for viewing and editing the text in prior to embossing, and a translation engine for Braille contraction translations. The translation engine can handle both grade 1 and grade 2 in many languages, including Greek and Russian. A language, SLIB, "Script Language for Index Braille", has been created to define contraction rules. WinBraille also includes a rule file editor to edit the contraction rules and to compile them into a binary form, which the engine uses during the translation process.
    Braille to Text Translation for Hungarian BIBAFull-Text 610-617
      Andras Arato; Theresa Vaspori; Gareth Evans; Paul Blenkhorn
    This paper discusses the translation of Hungarian Braille to text. A multi-lingual, table-driven Braille translator is described. The types of Hungarian Braille are discussed and a set of rules are derived and presented for 44-rule Hungarian Braille for the Braille translator.
    The WinBraille Approach to Producing Braille Quickly and Effectively BIBAFull-Text 618-619
      Mats Blomquist; Per Burman
    With WinBraille it is possible to emboss directly from a word processor like Microsoft Word on any of Index Braille's embossers, and on-the-fly contract the document into grade 2 Braille. The benefit of WinBraille is that it has a simple interface for the novice, but is still powerful for the advanced user. WinBraille contains Windows drivers for Index Braille's embossers, the WinBraille application, contraction rules for more than 20 languages, a contraction rule editor, predefined profiles and templates for immediate access, and macros to directly emboss from Microsoft Word. The combination of Word macros, drivers, predefined contraction rules, profiles and templates makes the system suitable for the user with no or limited knowledge of Braille and Braille printing. We describe how the WinBraille's approach can facilitate the daily work for people who normally do not print Braille, but occasionally have to produce materials to be read by blind or visually impaired people. We also explore some of WinBraile's less advanced features, like Braille formatting and how to select different profiles and templates.

    People with Disabilities -- Daily Living

    Haptic Device System for Upper Limb Motor Function and Cognitive Function Rehabilitation BIBAFull-Text 620-627
      Yoshiyuki Takahashi; Takafumi Terada; Kaoru Inoue; Satoshi Sasada; Takashi Komeda
    We have developed a rehabilitation tool system utilizing a haptic device. We try to integrate motion and sensory therapy without the patients loosing their interest. This system aims to integrate the training of both motor function disorder and cognitive function disorder. It consists of a haptic device, a display, a computer and software for training. The haptic device provides a virtual force in the different training programs. Patients can improve not only motor function, but also cognitive function. This system can record the training data. It can be used to evaluate the relearning degree, using quantitative analysis. We tried to evaluate the functionality of this system by introducing it to physical and occupational therapists. They had a good impression of this system.
    Networking for Accessibility: Elderly People and New Technology BIBAFull-Text 628-634
      Sirkku Männikkö-Barbutiu
    The paper investigates two specific types of practices that are evolving in order to reduce the digital divide and to bring the ICT to the elderly people. They are sensitising and social learning. Sensitising is understood here as a process through which elderly are becoming aware of the new technology, its existence and its possibilities. Sensitising may take place indirectly through everyday social interaction with family and friends as well as directly through specific, organised events, which aim to inform elderly of the ICT. Social learning refers to the organised efforts that gather elderly together to learn about the technology. This is done in local SeniorNet clubs, which connect to the long tradition of study circles in Sweden. Clubs provide both a place where the technology is available to the elderly and a community for learning about the technology.
    Tele-Help and Remote Service Provision Using RESORT Prototype System BIBAFull-Text 635-642
      Paul Panek; Christian Beck; Andreas Hochgatterer; Stefan Mina; Barbara Prazak; Gottfried Seisenbacher; Mathijs Soede; Wolfgang L. Zagler
    The DE-4208 RESORT tele help prototype provides remote support for disabled users of PC based Rehabilitation Technology (RT) and their care persons in order to reduce existing barriers in daily usage and service of RT. The current RESORT prototype and its interface specification support also synchronisation of single switch users over narrow bandwidth network channels. The IP based RESORT system with its scaleable user interface is described explaining also the remote service API which allows to make already available RT software products ready to benefit from RESORT's tele help functionality. Experiences from real life tests and an outlook to current and future activities are given.
    Making Yourself at Home -- Portable Personal Access Preferences BIBAFull-Text 643-648
      Jutta Treviranus
    Whether using a public workstation, or engaging in an on-line learning environment, computer systems should fit the individual preferences and requirements of the user, especially if the user requires an alternative access system. An international effort is underway to create a common specification for expressing personal preferences for all systems affecting the user interface and content retrieval. The ATRC of the University of Toronto has created the first models or implementations of this common specification.
    EU Project SILC -- Personal Bio-Sensor Based Alarm System BIBAFull-Text 649-656
      Peter Mayer; Georg Edelmayer; Wolfgang L. Zagler
    The aim of the project SILC (Supporting Independently Living Citizens) is to prolong the quality of life of older and infirm people by postponing the need for institutionalization. To achieve this aim, the consortium is investigating the feasibility, and develop working prototypes, of a portable wrist-worn life-signs monitor and communications link, giving the user the ability and confidence to continue to live in the community longer. The device will intelligently monitor the well being of the user and report alarms in the event of problems being detected. It will also permit two-way conversations with care providers, initiated either by the user or by the care provider. In this paper a general introduction and a status report on the development of the first prototypes will be given.
    Videophones: Useful Assistive Devices for Visually Impaired Persons? BIBAFull-Text 657-658
      Morten Tollefsen; Magne Lunde
    Videophones for people with visual impairments may sound like a contradiction of terms. In the "eye-phone" pilot project, our idea was to use the videophone as a communication channel to a sighted eye. An important question therefore was: What is the need for the human eye today and in the future? Visually impaired people have different expectations and needs, but when do they really need access to a sighted eye? Can existing information technology and dedicated devices solve most of the daily needs for blind and partially sighted persons, or do videophones offer new and/or better solutions to some of these needs? The "eye-phone" concept is selected to demonstrate a complete system: videophones and a sighted operator. The operators are usually located in a central, but the sighted person may instead be a personal reading assistant.
    HMPH -- "Habitat Mobile pour Personnes Handicapées" -- Software for the Design of an Adapted Living Area BIBAFull-Text 659-661
      Jérôme Leloup; Pierre Gaucher
    The aim of the HMPH project is to specify the functionalities of a movable, opened and adapted living area, enabling a better autonomy by means of appropriate assistive technologies, home automation and electronic devices, linked by a home network. Moreover, it should be able to be inserted in a strongly medicalized facility, as well as in a familial area. To design the interior layout of this adapted living area in a minimal time, we propose a software tool that will allow making the layouts taking the constraints, needs and wills of the resident into account. The software and its prospects of evolution are presented, the first results can be seen at http://www.e3i.univ-tours.fr/CNHL.
    "Bonkers". Increasing Literacy Skills: An Eclectic Electronic Teaching Approach Gone "Bonkers" BIBAFull-Text 662-664
      Diana P. James
    This position paper accounts the vision of a former public school speech-language pathologist and present day university clinical director. The vision is for the application of interactive exciting software technology to increase the literacy skills of children and youth with language and literacy disorders. Miss Bonkers, the bouncy and excited teacher and heroine in Dr. Suess' Hooray for Diffendoofer Day, provides her students with eclectic teaching and learning strategies. Multimedia software is the "Miss Bonkers" of computer learning. Multimedia software provides the student with exciting interactive learning possibilities. This clinician argues that the implementation of various inexpensive multisensory software, offered by publishers such as Dorling-Kindersley Family Learning, Disney Interactive, and MacMillon would aid in the rehabilitation of those children and youth identified with communication disorders -- specifically those with the following problems: expressive language delay, reading/ reading comprehension disorder, spelling/writing failure, learning a second language, and attention deficit disorder [4].

    Access Music

    Access Music BIBAFull-Text 665-666
      Ben Challis
    Music is a powerful way of conveying emotion. Its strength perhaps lies in the fact that we can all make music in one way or another. From the day we are born we are encouraged to do just this. Our parents sing to us, we are taught to clap and sing along to music at school, some of us learn to play musical instruments and eventually there will be those of us who move on to make a career in music. Traditionally, to pursue such a career would require considerable study into the theory of music and the practical aspects of performance. More recently there has been a move towards making music production more accessible to novices. Rapid increases in the availability of affordable music technology aimed at the home-user market have changed our attitudes towards who can and cannot become involved in music making. Computer-based applications allow us to learn how to play an instrument, to record and edit our own performances, to write and print music notation and even to create new and unusual synthesised sounds. Professional quality music can be recorded, mixed, mastered and transferred to CD from within the home-environment. Not that long ago, each stage of this process would require separate expert technicians.
    Spoken Music: Enhancing Access to Music for the Print Disabled BIBAFull-Text 667-674
      David Crombie; Sijo Dijkstra; Edmar Schut; Natasha Lindsay
    The traditional approach taken to the provision of music for the print disabled by major organisations has been largely concerned with Braille music. Reading Braille music is a specialised skill and not all visually impaired people can do this. There are some technologies available which allow the print-disabled to service themselves but there remains a lot of work to be done in this area. FNB has developed a new approach, called Spoken Music. The Spoken Music system can cope with a range of music, from elementary to professional levels, which can be very complex indeed. Opportunities for collaboration clearly exist as organisations move towards common standards (such as DAISY) and as digital distribution channels multiply.
    A Music Score Recogniser for the Blind BIBAFull-Text 675-681
      Angelo Da Ronch; Adriano Blason
    A music score recogniser for the blind is described. It is being developed at the Institute of Systems Sciences and Biomedical Engineering of the Italian Research National Council (LADSEB-CNR), Padua. The computer software application performs processing and pattern recognition on scanned printed score images; the results are stored both in a MIDI file to be played by a standard acoustic device and in a text only file, in order to permit both sighted and blind users to edit its contents.
    Visualization of Music Notation for Partially Sighted Persons BIBAFull-Text 682-683
      Tatiana Evreinova; Roope Raisamo
    The goal of this work is to find an inexpensive solution that would allow real-time imaging of music notation through spatial-temporal color coding. The device consists of four light emitting diodes, which are coupled with eyeglasses. Software and pilot evaluation of the method of imaging were performed. The average value of recognized test notes among noise ones was 87.24% at exposition times 640-1280 ms and dispersion was 14.4%.
    Accessing the Software Studio BIBAFull-Text 684-685
      Damian T. Murphy; Mark A. Hildred
    The pairing of modern computing power and the software studio environment potentially offers the disabled musician access to creativity as never before. Limitations identified through the use of switch control for both specialist music applications and overlay software have resulted in novel hardware solutions being investigated. MIDIcreator has been used to link a reduced control set interface with a standard software studio application, allowing navigation and control of audio functions.

    People with Disabilities -- Political, Legal, and Individual Aspects

    Opening Doors to Information Technology -- Section 508 of the US Rehabilitation Act of 1973 BIBAFull-Text 686-691
      Helen Chamberlain
    Section 508 of the US Rehabilitation Act of 1973 has the potential to make the biggest impact on reducing barriers to technology for many people with disabilities. Although it only applies to the U. S. Federal government, its impact is being felt in the U. S. state governments, the private sector, and around the world.
    Access: The North American Experience of Legislating Attitudes BIBAFull-Text 692-698
      Zachariah Cameron
    The past century and particularly the past four decades saw great improvements in science and technology. Many such improvements have promoted Accessibility. This apparent symbiotic relationship is not all that it seems. Technological advancement is a necessary but not, in itself, a sufficient catalyst to Accessibility. In the twentieth century the situation of people with disabilities saw very slow socio-economic progress, largely through the efforts of humanitarian agencies. In the 1960's the humanitarian organizations were joined by the rights based organizations and together they were responsible for a significant surge toward equal access. It was, however, not until broad based legislation was put in place in the form of the "Americans with Disabilities Act" that attitudes and equality began to change in a real and broad based manner. It is in the dialogue on disability, access and compliance that we see this change.
    An Open Machine Translation System for Augmentative and Alternative Communication BIBAFull-Text 699-706
      Constantinos Viglas; Georgios Kouroupetroglou
    In this paper we describe the characteristics of an open system we designed and implemented that adds Machine Translation (MT) capabilities into Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) applications. In particular, we present the basis for an open MT framework that can easily integrate with component-based developments especially regarding interpersonal communication and information presentation, either in standalone or web-based applications. We concentrate on the system's core, an expandable database of multimedia elements, which offers uniform management of multiple representations of concepts in both natural languages and symbolic communication systems, allowing concept-by-concept omnidirectional translation. Applications of the system are also presented, along with brief pointers on current work for possible extensions and improvements.
    Capabilities and Limitations of the Disabled in Remote Access to Information BIBAFull-Text 707-708
      Ryszard Kowalik
    The article discusses ways in which the disabled can remotely access sources of information. It presents devices and aids designed to enable groups of disabled users to remotely access the Information Centre, define the information they need, and receive and record it in a way that best serves the handicapped inquirer's needs.
    IMPACT: An Example of Information, Awareness, and Legislation, Leading toward a More Accessible Workplace BIBAFull-Text 709-711
      Mueller Iversen
    The foundation of IMPACT, the Department of State's IRM Program for Accessible Computer/Communication Technology, was information, awareness, and legislation, with customer service serving as the ever-important cement. Advocacy of accessible Department IRM technology, information, and programs to Department customers, including employees with disabilities, was the initial goal of IMPACT. Sharing information about technology, as well as employees' workplace concerns fostered an understanding of basic access issues and promoted positive customer awareness. IMPACT also provided the Department with the opportunity to be proactive, rather than reactive to legislative requirements. Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, mandates that U.S. government agencies comply with certain accessibility requirements, and IMPACT is the Department's Section 508 resource. While IMPACT continues to serve as a customer-driven vehicle to champion accessibility through a foundation of information, awareness, and legislation, that service increases, exponentially, as our customers take back to their organizations information that will assist with their implementation of Section 508, leading to a more accessible workplace.

    IT-Certficates to Foster the Vocational Integration of People with Disabilities: ECDL® PD

    IT-Certificates to Foster the Vocational Integration of People with Disabilities: ECDL® PD BIBAFull-Text 712-714
      Andrea Petz; Denise Leahy
    In this Special Thematic Session, we want to discuss the possibilities of using standard or special certificates for IT-skills to foster the vocational integration of people with disabilities. One part of the STS will present first results of the above mentioned project. The STS should discuss how and why access to such certificates can become a tool for supporting the integration of people of all social orders and what difficulties may occur. Researchers, teachers and experts in the field of IT training and certificates are invited to contribute to this STS.
    ECDL for Visually Impaired Persons: Learning Materials, Individual Training, and Distance Education BIBAFull-Text 715-722
      Morten Tollefsen; Magne Lunde
    Accessible learning materials, adapted training and a suitable certification scheme are important parts in the Norwegian ECDL project. Training and learning materials are discussed in this paper. Both individual training and distance education are parts of the project. Syllabus and the certification scheme are discussed in a separate paper.
    ECDL® PD -- Using a Well Known Standard to Lift Barriers on the Labour Market BIBAFull-Text 723-730
      Andrea Petz; Klaus Miesenberger
    In September 2001, the European Commission decided to fund a pilot project called ECDL® PD1 which aims at adapting the widespread and well known ECDL®/ICDL®2 certificate to the needs of people with disabilities. The ECDL®/ ICDL® should not only become a tool for people with disabilities, but also for the increasing number of other underprivileged people on the labour market (e.g. older people, people with poor education, people with a weak social background, immigrants...)
       This paper consists of two main parts: Part I introduces the certificate ECDL®/ICDL® in general; Part II explains the idea ECDL® PD and presents first results.
    KISS -- Keep It Short and Simple? BIBAFull-Text 731-733
      Andrea Petz
    "An average sentence, in a German newspaper, is a sublime and impressive curiosity; it occupies a quarter of a column; it contains all the ten parts of speech -- not in regular order, but mixed; it is built mainly of compound words constructed by the writer on the spot, and not to be found in any dictionary -- six or seven words compacted into one, without joint or seam -- that is, without hyphens; it treats of fourteen or fifteen different subjects, each enclosed in a parenthesis of its own, with here and there extra parentheses, making pens with pens; finally, all the parentheses and reparentheses are massed together between a couple of king-parentheses, one of which is placed in the first line of the majestic sentence and the other in the middle of the last line of it -- after which comes the VERB, and you find out for the first time what the man has been talking about" [1].
    Many Ways to ECDL BIBAFull-Text 734-736
      Magne Lunde; Morten Tollefsen
    In 2000, the firm MediaLT initiated a Norwegian project, where the goal was to adapt the European Computer Driving License (ECDL) for the blind and partially sighted, i. e. to develop and arrange a distant education course and a certification scheme. This short paper will cover the work related to adapting the certification scheme. Individual adapted training and accessible learning materials are discussed in a separate paper. We wanted to explore if the certification scheme discriminated the visual impaired, because the ECDL tests measured the method and not the ability to solve tasks.

    Studying and Academic Mobility -- IT Support for People with Disabilities

    Studying and Academic Mobility -- IT Support for Students with Disabilities BIBAFull-Text 737-738
      Joachim Klaus
    Globalisation and internationality, competition and knowledge, mobility and transnational experience -- these are some of the keywords dominating our new millennium. Human resources, personal qualification and life long learning is our platform concerning these worldwide challenges. Our society pretends to be open, based on an social, humanistic and democratic structure, enabling to every individual to develop his/her personal and intellectual capacities and to present an adequate surrounding. Reality is far away: our daily experience around us and the news transported from everywhere of our globe -- not only the difference between the northern and southern hemisphere, countries in west and east, but as well the exclusion of special groups like elder people, un- or semi-skilled people, women and handicapped characterise our actual situation. The scissors of those having access and those being segregated as fringe groups diverge and seem to be accepted as fatalistic.
    Developing Academic Skills among Print Disabled Students: IT Based Austrian-Wide Network for Service Provision BIBAFull-Text 739-746
      Andrea Petz; Klaus Miesenberger; Bernhard Stöger
    This paper presents the service provision system for print disabled students at Austrian Universities. An institute with full research and teaching tasks is established which in addition networks all small support units or centers at universities to enable a full scaled service provision. Students with print disabilities can decide whatever course they want to attend and wherever they want to study -- a freedom which society basically guarantees to everybody.
    Access to Learning for All BIBAFull-Text 747-748
      Mirela Arion; Radu Ciupa; Marius Iulian Tutuianu
    This paper presents a real situation case study at "Babes-Bolyai" University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania, a pilot project for facilitating access to communication and learning for visually impaired students, using open and distance learning techniques. There are at least two important implications when trying to facilitate the access of visually impaired students to communication and learning: implications for the design of web accessible interfaces and implications for didactics. Our paper is going to emphasize the first implication.
    The Evolving Door: Providing Technology Access for Post-secondary Students in a Constantly Changing Technology-Based Culture BIBAFull-Text 749-750
      Janice Hecht; Bogdan Zamfir
    The Center for Adaptive Technology at Southern Connecticut State University was established in 1988 to provide access to computers for students with disabilities. The challenge of keeping current with both standard and adaptive technology has caused our service to evolve from a focused, centralized model to an integrated model providing technology access to students regardless of their location on campus.
    Taking Assistive Technology to the Highest Degree BIBAFull-Text 751-752
      Todd Schmiedl; S. L. Dyser
    This paper presents the case study of a 40 year old married man who sustained an incomplete C4-5 spinal cord injury with occipital lobe head trauma during an automobile accident in 1980. The event left him with a motor status of quadriplegia, significant speech aphasia, and severely impaired vision. It provides an overview of Dr. Schmiedl's background and his use of assistive technology during his doctoral program in neuropsychology.
    Learning from Each Other: Comparing the Service Provision for Blind and Visually-Impaired Students in Post-secondary Education in Japan and Europe BIBAFull-Text 753-755
      Hiroshi Katoh; Martin Pauly; Shunsuke Hara; Hideji Nagaoka; Klaus Miesenberger
    The number of visually handicapped students who study at universities and other organizations for post secondary education is increasing gradually. The situation of higher education for the visually impaired is rapidly changing and different countries answer this situation in different ways. In this research, we started to compare the educational systems and the service provision systems for blind and visually handicapped students in post-secondary education in Japan and European countries, mainly Austria. The goal of these studies is to outline proposals for the improvement of the higher education for the target group.
    How Accessible Are Web Information Resources for Students with Disabilities? BIBAFull-Text 756-757
      Sri H. Kurniawan
    This study investigated the accessibility of web information resources for students with disabilities of 120 academic sites from the U.K., U.S., Australia and Canada using Bobby automatic accessibility tool. The analysis revealed that web sites in this study have higher percentage of accessible sites than most findings from other studies, but 48% of the sites were still inaccessible. The U.K. and U.S. web sites were more superior to the Canadian and Australian sites for major accessibility issues. The difference was less clear in minor issues. There was no significant difference in browser compatibility across originating countries.
    Providing Assistive Technology and Alternate Media in Community Colleges: A Case Study BIBAFull-Text 758-760
      Calais Roussel
    While required by federal and state law, full access at the community college level for students with assistive technology (AT) and alternate media needs presents multiple challenges. Programs must be carefully planned to not only instruct students in assistive technologies which will enable them to access instructional materials, but entire campuses and college systems must work as cohesive units in order to create access for all students. One example of a community college AT and alternate media plan will be presented, with discussion regarding technological limitations and future directions. California community colleges provide a useful case study, as recent changes in the law and campus practices have led to widespread adoption of assistive technologies and principles of universal access.

    International Collaboration to Improve Assistive Technology Outcomes

    International Collaboration to Improve Assistive Technology Outcomes BIBAFull-Text 761-763
      Marcia J. Scherer Craddock; B. Eng
    The outcomes of assistive technology has relied on anecdotal evidence since the inception of the field. With the current healthcare and AT funding situations that exist in North America and Europe, such evidence is no longer sufficient. With the support of RESNA and AAATE, developers of AT outcomes measures have formed the Assistive Technology International Outcomes Consortium (ATIOC) to collaboratively work on the development and dissemination of high quality measures of AT use.
    The Study of Assistive Technology Outcomes in the United States BIBAFull-Text 764-771
      Marcia J. Scherer
    The importance of assistive technology (AT) in helping individuals with disabilities lead more independent and participatory lives is not in debate. What is in debate is the reasons for AT non-use and abandonment and how this field has lagged behind others in assessing the outcomes of AT service delivery. Rather than focus on the alleviation of AT abandonment, this paper argues for an emphasis on optimizing the appropriate match of AT and user. Ways to achieve this focus on characteristics of the milieu of use, user/person and the particular AT being considered.
    Future Challenges in AT Outcome Measurement BIBAFull-Text 772-776
      Luc P. de Witte; G. J. Gelderblom; R. D. Wessels
    This paper goes into some of the advantages and problems of international collaboration in developing measurement instruments for Assistive Technology outcome assessment. It results in a strong plea for developing an international network of researchers and institutes, together developing a common research agenda for this field. By joining the efforts in different countries, the quality of outcome measurement in Assistive Technology is likely to improve and the use of good instruments to increase. As a result, the (quality of) knowledge about the effectiveness of Assistive Technology will increase, which will contribute to the quality of Assistive Technology provision and service delivery.
    European Instruments for Assistive Technology Outcome Assessment BIBAFull-Text 777-781
      G. J. Gelderblom; L. P. de Witte; R. D. Wessels
    The need for insight in cost effectiveness of Assistive Technology at both policy and individual level has led to the development of a number of generic instruments measuring the outcomes of Assistive Technology. Three important instruments, all emerged from the context of European funded projects, are described. First, a method combining an adaptation of EuroQol to Assistive Technology application, then IPPA, an highly individualised instrument assessing effectiveness and finally SCAI, a method for the economic evaluation of additional social costs resulting from the provision of an assistive device. The need for a strategy for further development of instruments is discussed resulting in a call for European collaboration.
    Implementing Outcomes Measurement in an Assistive Technology Service Delivery System BIBAFull-Text 782-789
      Gerald Craddock
    The purpose of this paper is to outline the Assistive Technology (AT) national service delivery system in Ireland. Assessing both the structural supports and barriers that are present within the Irish system. National governments throughout Europe are looking to streamline their services and to monitor and measure the quality of those services. In Ireland these initiatives have come at a time where the health service is in urgent need of reorganisation and restructuring. Massive cuts and lack of government funding over the past three decades has dangerously depleted the whole health care system. At the same time the health services are looking at how to measure the quality of service The outcomes of two national projects carried out by the Central Remedial Clinic's (CRC) Client technical Services Dept. (CTS) are outlined to show one possible way that the future may be constructed through positive action within a partnership philosophy.