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New smartwatch will put affordable braille e-reading on wrists

By Chris Meadows
August 3, 2015 // 1 Comment

A new smartwatch, the Dot, is coming out, with timepiece, navigation, fitness tracking, and other functions—but instead of the usual smartwatch display, this one is a set of rising and falling pins to display in braille. With a 10-hour battery life, the watch is scheduled start taking pre-orders [...]

Why Everyone Should Care About DRM's Punishment Of The Visually Impaired

By libertyc
October 1, 2012 // 2 Comments

Techdirt writes a lot about the problems with DRM, and how inefficient and inconvenient it is. But for millions of visually-impaired people, those “inconveniences” represent something much deeper, and much worse. Somebody who has started writing eloquently about this issue is Rupert [...]

Haptic Braille device could let blind read print books in braille

By libertyc
December 10, 2010 // 1 Comment

Anyone who has seen the movie Sneakers is familiar with the idea of braille screens for reading by the blind. In the real world, however, braille screens are gimmicky, expensive, non-portable devices prone to mechanical failure, and I am told most blind computer users make do with [...]

The iPhone is the greatest thing to happen to the blind, says Austin Seraphin

By libertyc
September 29, 2010 // 0 Comments

This is a post from Austin Seraphin’s Behind the Curtain blog from back in June. It’s well worth reading the whole thing: Last Wednesday, my life changed forever. I got an iPhone. I consider it the greatest thing to happen to the blind for a very long time, possibly ever. It offers [...]

Ereaders and accessibility – Kindle and iPad take the lead

By libertyc
August 6, 2010 // 0 Comments

Ars Technica has an overview article about current ereaders and accessibility – the Kindle and the iPad lead and the Nook and Sony aren’t in the running. We already covered the National Federation of the Blind commending Amazon on the new accessibility features of the 3rd generation [...]

National Federation of the Blind commends Amazon on new accessible Kindle

By libertyc
August 5, 2010 // 0 Comments

From the press release: The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) today commended Amazon on the unveiling of a new, accessible Kindle. Amazon announced Wednesday that the new Kindle will come equipped with a voice guide that reads all menu options aloud so blind and other print-disabled people can [...]

iPod Touch to get cameras, FaceTime?

By libertyc
July 11, 2010 // 0 Comments

A part listing from an iPod replacement parts vendor has led to speculation that this fall’s iPod Touch refresh will include not only the higher-resolution “retina display” of the iPhone 4, but also the iPhone 4’s front and back cameras and FaceTime video chat. Our sister blog AppleTell has [...]

Royal National Institute of Blind People praises Apple and the iPad

By libertyc
June 4, 2010 // 2 Comments

That is what The Telegraph is reporting today. According to the article: “When it comes to embedding accessibility, Apple has set the standard in recent years,” said Robin Spinks, principal manager of digital accessibility at the RNIB. “It is now up to other manufacturers to [...]

Technology overtakes braille in Canada

By libertyc
April 30, 2010 // 2 Comments

Back in January we did an article: “Listening to Braille” : Braille advocates at odds with new audio technologies. Now an article in CTV News, of Canada, discusses the same issue. Less than 10 percent of Canada’s 830,000 vision impaired people can read braille. New technology, such as [...]

The iPad and reading for the blind – a real boon

By libertyc
April 14, 2010 // 0 Comments

Forbes talks about this and points out how the Kindle could have been a great boon to the blind and visually disabled, but missed the opportunity because of its setup and even incurred a lawsuit from advocacy groups. However, the iPad is a boon to the blind, says the article. I must admit that I [...]

Looktel bringing hand-held text-to-speech to Windows Mobile smartphones

By libertyc
March 31, 2010 // 0 Comments

Remember the Intel Reader, the $1500 handheld device that acts as a hand-held portable scanner/OCR/text-to-speech device for the blind? A company called LookTel is in the beta stage of bringing something similar to Windows Mobile camera phones. The device will speak aloud text (package labels or [...]

Digital talking book internet service delivers one millionth download

By libertyc
March 27, 2010 // 0 Comments

From the press release by the Library of Congress: … [a recent download] marked the one millionth piece of reading material delivered by the Braille and Audio Reading Download (BARD) service, a new initiative from the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS), [...]

Quick Note: Free books for braille and DAISY readers

By libertyc
February 1, 2010 // 0 Comments

More free stuff today. Download 20 free first chapters of contemporary titles, as well as 5 complete Classics titles at www.readhowyouwant.com/humanware. Classics titles selected for the February Free Download Program are Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte, Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift, [...]

Webcast on digital accessibility available

By libertyc
January 14, 2010 // 0 Comments

This free webcast is now available. It is a discussion of the philosophy, research, planning, and development of the next generation of Library-Services-provided free talking books. Speakers are: Frank Kurt Cylke, Michael Katzmann, John Bryant, Michael Martys, Donald Olson, Edmund O’Reilly. You [...]

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