International Disability Alliance Becomes a Legal Entity
On June 7, 2013 the constitutive General Assembly of the International Disability Alliance (IDA) was held in Geneva. Twelve member organizations (see the full list on top of the page) joined today to establish the new legally incorporated International Disability Alliance. The legal incorporation of IDA is an important decision which will strengthen the organization, its members and will result in a better respect and protection of the human rights of persons with disabilities worldwide.
From www.internationaldisabilityalliance.org/en, June 13, 2013
Bionic Eye Promises Vision for the Blind
World-leading technology that could help restore vision to a large number of Australia's 45,000 blind people is set to emerge from a Melbourne university. The Monash Vision system, developed by a team of 60 at Monash University, allows blind users to make out objects and other people with the aid of a brain implant that connects wirelessly to a camera which can be housed in a pair of glasses or even on the end of the user's finger.
From http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/07/bionic-eye-vision-for-blind, June 13, 2013
IBM Research Raises the Bar on Accessibility
I consider myself lucky to attend a number of conferences specific to blindness, visual impairment, and technology. Well, at the 2013 AFB Leadership Conference, IBM Research just raised the bar for accessibility in my eyes. The innovative work they're doing to create accessibility options for educational videos got me out of my seat. I feel like I am now an IBM Research groupie. The work that Chieko Asakawa, Hiro Takagi, and Peter Fay presented on during the preconference and general conference is making video description and captioning for video content a realistic option for large amounts of video.
From http://www.afb.org/blog.aspx?BlogID=7&BlogEntryID=714, June 12, 2013
W3C User Agent Accessibility Guidelines Updated
W3C published an updated version of the recently released working draft Implementing User Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG) 2.0. The draft provides guidance for designing accessible user agents, which include “web browsers and other types of software that retrieve and render web content.”
From http://www.wirelessrerc.org/content/newsroom/user-agent-accessibility-guidelines-updated#sthash.m5inlENh.dpuf, June 12, 2013
The Importance of Mobile Accessibility for Seniors and Persons with Disabilities
The desire to connect whenever we want, wherever we are has created a unique opportunity for the private sector to capture new markets as they work to fulfill our desire for ubiquitous connectivity. The growth in mobile ICT technology is profound and shows little signs of slowing down. While many of us may take for granted the ability to navigate an app on a smart phone or tablet to check a bank balance, make a reservation at a restaurant or interact with our social networks, there is a large portion of the world’s population, both persons with disabilities (PwDs) and the aging, that find using a mobile device to be a significant challenge.
From http://asmarterplanet.com/mobile-enterprise/blog/2013/06/the-importance-of-mobile-accessibility-for-seniors-and-persons-with-disabilities.html, June 12, 2013
Conference to Focus on Arts Technologies for Disabled Persons
How does one play the trumpet when he or she has no arms to hold it? How does one paint when he or she is paralyzed? Methods for overcoming such obstacles that confront mobility-impaired people will be the focus of a conference at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute today. “A lot of current technology for disabled people focuses on addressing everyday needs like working, eating, moving about the house,” said event organizer and RPI professor Jonas Braasch, in a statement. “That's important, but it's also important that people with special needs have access to an outlet for their creativity. We are working to give people the ability to express themselves creatively.”
From http://troyrecord.com/articles/2013/06/08/news/doc51b2c6b3c3981595652162.txt, June 12, 2013
USA: Odin Mobile Announces the First Mobile Service Dedicated to the Blind and Persons with Low Vision
Odin Mobile, a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) on the T-Mobile network, today announced the country’s first mobile service designed for the
sole purpose of improving wireless accessibility for the visually impaired.
From http://m-enabling.com/press%20releases/M-Enabling%20PR%20-%20Odin%20Mobile.pdf, June 11, 2013
USA / France: Kapsys Presents Smartphones for Seniors and Visually Impaired at the M-Enabling Summit 2013
After a successful showcase at the Mobile World Congress 2013 in February this year, KAPSYS, a French company specializing in digital mobility and wireless communication for the elderly and visually impaired, presented to the American public its new Smartphones on the occasion of the M-Enabling Summit, an exhibition dedicated to mobile applications and services for the elderly and visually impaired.
From http://www.espacedatapresse.com/fil_datapresse/consultation_cp.jsp?ant=reseau_2764186, June 11, 2013
Sprint CEO Dan Hesse remarks at M-Enabling Summit 2013
It is an honor to be the first Fortune 500 CEO to address this conference. I’m proud of the progress Sprint has made in making our products more accessible and in helping to improve the quality of life for our customers with disabilities. I’ve been asked why Sprint focuses so much on people with disabilities, and why even my business cards have braille on the back.
From http://newsroom.sprint.com/executive-team/executive-speeches/dan-hesse-remarks-at-m-enabling-summit.htm, June 11, 2013
Z-Connector Presents Devices at M-Enabling Summit 2013 to Help Users Stay Connected
Z-Connector LLC, local producers of safety chains to keep cell phones attached and accessible, will present their helpful attachments for mobile devices at the second annual M-Enabling Summit in Washington, D.C., June 6-7. The Miami-based company is donating 600 of their connective devices to be given away at the upcoming summit.
From http://www.prweb.com/releases/2013/6/prweb10802248.htm, June 11, 2013