The Future of Universal Design: From Accessibility to Inclusion
Universal design (UD) is an idea that developed in the mid-1990s as advocates of making buildings and products accessible to people with disabilities realized that these features often had benefits for a broader population. Examples include curb ramps, automated doors, closed captioning in television sets and accessibility features for computer operating systems.
From http://usodep.blogs.govdelivery.com/2014/02/04/the-future-of-universal-design/, February 04, 2014
Wearable Transmitter Turns Your Palm Into a Touch Interface
The world could be at your fingertips, thanks to a new wearable, gesture-based gadget. Fin enables users to control up to three devices such as smartphones, car radios and smart TVs using only swipes and taps. The ring-shaped technology is worn on the thumb, and communicates with different devices using Bluetooth. Fin has five pre-programmed gestures; in its final iteration, users will be able to create custom ones on an app that will come with the device. "People in today's world are becoming more busy, but still they are wasting a lot of time interacting with their smart devices," Rohildev Nattukallingal, founder of RHL Vision Technologies, the startup behind Fin, told Mashable. "Fin removes this interaction gap by allowing users to quickly interact with those devices."
From http://mashable.com/2014/02/02/palm-fin-touch-interface/, February 03, 2014
Microsoft's New Commercial Focuses on People with Disabilities
Microsoft new commercial focuses on people with disabilities. There are people who are deaf, blind and others. The ad shows that computers and technology can allow people to overcome their disabilities.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2014/02/03/microsoft-new-commercial-focuses-on-people-with-disabilities/, February 03, 2014
FCC Extends Comment Deadline: Rulemaking on Closed Captioning of IP-Delivered Video Programming
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released an Order in the Matter of Closed Captioning of Internet Protocol-Delivered Video Programming: Implementation of the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 [MB Docket No. 11-154]. The Order extends the comment deadline for the Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking released on December 13, 2013, wherein the FCC requested comments on rules regarding the closed captioning of IP-delivered video programming.
From http://www.wirelessrerc.org/content/newsroom/fcc-extends-comment-deadline-rulemaking-closed-captioning-ip-delivered-video, January 31, 2014
USA: Voting Poses Ongoing Accessibility Challenges for Persons with Disabilities
Former Columbia County Supervisor Neil Ford says he votes absentee, always. Ford, of the town of Lodi, is legally blind. And, while Columbia County’s polling places have a device that allows people with visual impairments to mark their ballots utilizing audio cues, Ford said the availability of those devices doesn’t solve his fundamental polling place accessibility challenge — transportation. There are numerous people, like Ford, who find it difficult to vote in elections because of accessibility problems.
From http://www.wiscnews.com/portagedailyregister/news/local/article_4ae3a6ec-3dd4-56ae-b528-f67300fd459e.html, January 31, 2014
USA: Broadway Theaters to Make Disabled Accessibility Changes
Nine of Broadway’s most famous theaters in a settlement with the feds agreed Wednesday to make massive changes to boost accessibility for disabled patrons. Manhattan US Attorney Preet Bharara announced the filing and simultaneous settlement of a lawsuit his office brought against the Nederlander Organization, which owns and operates the Brooks Atkinson, Gershwin, Lunt Fontanne, Marquis, Minskoff, Nederlander, Neil Simon, Palace and Richard Rodgers theatres.
From http://nypost.com/2014/01/30/broadway-theaters-to-make-disabled-accessibility-changes/, January 31, 2014
Accessibility Awards for 2013 Including Mainstream Accessible Game of the Year
The AbleGamers Charity Annual List of the Year’s Best Accessibility Achievements Including Media Champion, Innovator, Device, Publisher, Indie Game and Mainstream Game of the Year. The AbleGamers Charity enters a new era of recognizing the greatest accessibility achievements of the year in the gaming industry. In addition to this year’s mainstream accessible game of the year award, AbleGamers will also be recognizing media champion, innovator, device, publisher, and indie game of the year.
From http://www.ablegamers.com/ablegamers-news/accessibility-awards-for-2013-including-mainstream-accessible-game-of-the-year, January 31, 2014
App Lets Blind People See What's in Front of Them
For nearly a year, Rose Wagan has been using an app called Tap Tap See, which in its unique way lets blind people see what's in front them. The app uses an iDevice's camera and VoiceOver functions to photograph objects and identify them out lout for the user. Rose Waagan, blind since birth, uses her iPhone 5.
From http://www.komonews.com/news/local/App-Lets-Blind-People-See-Whats-in-Front-of-Them-241752171.html, January 30, 2014
The mHealth Movement: Mobile Apps and the Rise of Portable Care
an a text message or a smartphone app make you a better patient or keep you out of the ER? The rise of mHealth — the catchall term for medical services delivered via mobile devices — is showing promise for people who struggle to manage an array of health and lifestyle challenges. Mobile technology can be used to remotely monitor and report data on patient indicators such as blood pressure, oxygen levels, cholesterol and other vitals. Data streams fed into tracking software can help doctors detect problems when they start, leading to earlier intervention. And for patients, smartphones can relay physician feedback and promote healthy behavior.
From http://www.theatlantic.com/sponsored/cvs-innovation-care/2014/01/mhealth-movement-mobile-apps-and-rise-portable-care/97/, January 30, 2014
USA: FCC Grants Waiver of Accessibility Rules to e-Readers
On January 28, 2014, the FCC’s Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau granted a one-year waiver of its ACS accessibility rules for “basic e-readers” that are designed primarily for the purpose of reading text-based digital works, such as books, and that meet each of the following requirements, including that the device has no LCD screen, but rather utilizes a screen that is designed to optimize reading.
From http://www.digitaljournal.com/news/politics/fcc-grants-waiver-of-accessibility-rules-to-e-readers/article/367988, January 29, 2014