USA: Sprint Launches Mobile Accessibility App for Free to Android Users with Visual Disabilities
Sprint announced today at the 27th annual International Technology & Persons with Disabilities Conference, hosted by California State University Northridge (CSUN), that it has officially launched a free downloadable application providing easier access to an Android smartphone’s functionality for customers who are blind or have low vision. Developed by Code Factory, the full suite of Mobile Accessibility features is being offered by Sprint under the name “Wireless Accessibility,” at no charge through the Android Market to Sprint, Boost Mobile, and Virgin Mobile USA customers.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/03/01/sprint-launches-mobile-accessibility-app-for-free-to-android-users-with-visual-disabilities/, March 14, 2012
YouTube Makes Captioning More Accessible for Viewers with Hearing Disabilities
Millions of people enjoy viral videos each day, but some people aren’t getting the jokes — and it’s not for a lack of humor, either. Because many videos on YouTube do not include closed captioning, deaf viewers can be left out. But thanks to a new change at YouTube, more hard-of-hearing people will be able to indulge in the wealth of online videos. The video sharing site enabled caption support in 2006, but it announced Tuesday options that make user-uploaded videos more accessible for those who rely on closed captioning, with new languages, search options, and settings for video text.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/02/29/youtube-makes-captioning-more-accessible-for-viewers-with-hearing-disabilities/, March 14, 2012
Canada: Innovative Designs for Accessibility Competition Organized by COU to Make Ontario More Accessible
Ontario University students are being challenged to put their creative minds to work to develop solutions that will make the world more accessible for people with disabilities, including new IDeAs for devices, software, architectural design, awareness campaigns, or policies. The Innovative Designs for Accessibility (IDeA) competition is being organized by the Council of Ontario Universities (COU), in partnership with the Government of Ontario. The province-wide initiative is being overseen by the IDeA Working Group, comprised of representatives from engineering and design Faculties at several Ontario universities.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/02/28/innovative-designs-for-accessibility-competition-organized-by-cou-to-make-ontario-more-accessible/, March 14, 2012
Chinese Vice Premier Urges Equal Access for People with Disabilities
Chinese Vice Premier Hui Liangyu has called for equal access for people with disabilities to participate in the social life and to enjoy the benefits of the country’s development. Efforts should be made to narrow the gap in living standard between people with disabilities and the average people in the society, Hui said.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/03/01/chinese-vice-premier-urges-equal-access-for-people-with-disabilities/, March 14, 2012
USA: Tulane Engineering Students Invent Devices to Help Children with Disabilities
Because of a neurological condition called ataxia, Bennett Curran, 8, likes to hold the back of a kitchen chair and rock back and forth. But if the chair rocks too far, it tips over and Bennett tumbles to the floor. On Saturday, Bennett was able for the first time to climb onto his own rocking system, painted black with gold fleurs-de-lis and custom-built for him by a team of four students from Tulane University’s biomedical engineering department.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/03/05/tulane-engineering-students-invent-devices-to-help-children-with-disabilities/, March 14, 2012
UK: London Students Designed Solutions to Improve Sports Participation for Athletes with Disabilities
A bobsled guided by mind power, guns fired by blowing into a headset, desert waves created by nanobots – the world of athletes with disabilities could be very different in the near future. A new exhibition of prototypes aimed at making sport more accessible has opened in the British capital, featuring innovative ideas from young designers. Taking this year’s London Paralympic games as their inspiration, students from Imperial College, London and the Royal College of Art have come up with 11 ingenious ideas that dream up new equipment and, in some cases, entirely new sports.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/03/12/london-students-designed-solutions-to-improve-sports-participation-for-athletes-with-disabilities/, March 13, 2012
USA: Blind Students Use Right Touch at Braille Competition
Forty students from around the state, including 14 from the Top of Utah, gathered Friday at the Utah State Division of Services for Blind and Visually Impaired People for the annual Utah Regional Braille Competition. The competition, held annually in states across the nation, is the only academic competition for blind students in the United States. Utah has been participating in the event for nine years, with the top scorers moving on to the National Braille Challenge, held in June at the Braille Institute in California.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/03/04/blind-students-use-right-touch-at-braille-competition/, March 13, 2012
UAE: Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry Plans to Develop Restaurant Menus in Braille
The Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry plans to develop restaurant menus in Braille language to help customers with visual disabilities. Braille language uses punctures on paper so that it could be read with fingers. “The menu scheme will be launched in collaboration with the Ebsar Society for Rehabilitation of Visually Impaired,” Chairman of the Hospitality Committee at the JCCI Khaled Al-Harithy said while participating in a program for manpower development of people with disabilities at the chamber headquarters in Jeddah yesterday.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com, March 13, 2012
UNESCO: Kuwait a Pioneer in Providing Latest Technologies to Aid Education for People with Disabilities
Assistant Director-General for Education at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Dr. Qian Tang lauded Kuwait’s pioneering experience in providing well care and education for people with disabilities. Tang made this remark during an award-giving ceremony for the winners of Amir Jaber Al-Ahmad Prize that aims at giving a better education for people with intellectual disabilities. Kuwait’s experience in providing the latest technologies to aid the educational process for people with disabilities was a great “success” and it agrees with UNESCO’s goals which seek offering a wholesome educational opportunities for all sectors of the society.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com, March 13, 2012
Nigeria: Banks Plan Accessible Branches Across Cities
The Central Bank of Nigeria in conjunction with the Bankers’ Committee is working on a policy that will ensure that every bank has in every town, at least one branch that is accessible for people with disabilities. Central bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi disclosed this yesterday when members of the Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities (JONAPWD) paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Abuja. “At the last Bankers’ Committee where we talked about women, I told them we are going to come up with a policy that will make sure that every bank has in every town at least one branch that is accessible for people with disabilities. We will not ask them to restructure every branch but in Abuja there should be a branch, in Kano a branch, in every city a branch, in Lagos, you go to Ikoyi, Victoria Island or Ikeja, in each of those areas at least every bank must say this is our accessible branch.”
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/03/02/banks-plan-accessible-branches-in-nigeria/, March 13, 2012