YouTube Expands Automatic Video Captioning in Six More Languages
Google’s YouTube rolled out an update to its captions feature on November 28 that make it easier for viewers who are deaf or hard of hearing or who speak different languages to view YouTube content using automatic captioning in their native languages. The new languages supported include German, Italian, French, Portuguese, Russian, and Dutch – to the automatic-captioning services that debuted in 2009, according to a post on the YouTube blog. YouTube has added support for six more languages—German, Italian, French, Portuguese, Russian and Dutch—to the automatic-captioning services that debuted in 2009, according to a Nov. 28 post by Hoang Nguyen, a YouTube software engineer, on the YouTube blog.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/12/01/youtube-expands-automatic-video-captioning-in-6-more-languages/, December 03, 2012
Iraqi Campaign Raises Election Awareness Among Persons with Disabilities
Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) on November 29th kicked off a large-scale campaign across the country to encourage persons with disabilities to take part in the upcoming elections scheduled for April. “The campaign was launched to encourage persons with disabilities in Iraq to take part in election after we noticed a low turnout among them during previous elections,” IHEC member Khaled al-Rajab told Al-Shorfa. The campaign includes media workshops and lectures to encourage higher interaction and participation during the elections, he said.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/11/30/iraqi-campaign-raises-election-awareness-among-persons-with-disabilities/, December 03, 2012
International Day of Persons with Disabilities, December 3
Over one billion people, or approximately 15 per cent of the world’s population, live with some form of disability. Persons with disabilities, “the world’s largest minority”, often face barriers to participation in all aspects of society. Barriers can take a variety of forms, including those relating to the physical environment or to information and communications technology (ICT), or those resulting from legislation or policy, or from societal attitudes or discrimination. The result is that persons with disabilities do not have equal access to society or services, including education, employment, health care, transportation, political participation or justice.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/11/30/international-day-of-persons-with-disabilities-december-3/, December 03, 2012
Proposal for a New Directive on EU Web Accessibility
Today the European Commission’s Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (more commonly known as ‘DG Connect’) released a new proposal for a directive on “Accessibility of Public Sector Bodies’ Websites”. The proposed directive will require twelve categories of EU public sector websites which provide essential public services to EU citizens to comply with W3C’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 at the AA level. The proposal also makes clear that this level of accessibility support is desirable for all public sector websites.
From http://blogs.adobe.com/accessibility/2012/12/proposal-for-a-new-directive-on-eu-accessibility.html, December 03, 2012
Opinion: Recognizing Technology Accessibility on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities
Persons with disabilities make up 1 billion of the world’s population, yet they face challenges in equal opportunity and access to society in critical areas like education, employment, healthcare, transportation, information communications technology and justice. Every year on Dec. 3, the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, we recognize the importance of providing this underserved community with equal access opportunities and livelihoods. This year’s theme is “removing barriers to create an inclusive and accessible society for all” – an area in which technology plays an important role. Our company was founded on the belief that putting technology in the hands of individuals could enrich and improve their lives, and, for many years, Microsoft has been dedicated to providing persons with disabilities access to technology they can use.
From http://blogs.technet.com/b/microsoft_on_the_issues/archive/2012/12/03/recognizing-technology-accessibility-on-the-international-day-of-persons-with-disabilities.aspx, December 03, 2012
Improving Accessibility Can Close Digital Divide
In an increasingly interconnected world in which more and more services are being delivered online, it is imperative that people with disabilities are not left behind, writes Microsoft's chief accessibility officer.
From Public Service Europe - European politics, December 03, 2012
USA: ITU's ICT Innovation Application Challenge Invites Developers to Invent Apps for Underserved Communities
A cash prize of USD 5,000 is offered to the winner of a new ITU Application Challenge seeking to uncover apps extending the reach of mobile health, mobile money, e-learning, e-government and intelligent transport systems. The ICT Innovation Application Challenge aims to promote sustainable, equitable economic growth in emerging economies by unearthing apps targeting the social and economic inclusion of traditionally underserved communities.
From http://www.itu.int/en/ITU-T/challenges/innovation/Pages/default.aspx, November 29, 2012
Recommendations on Global mHealth Privacy and Security Policies to Come in 2013
Some legal and organizational heavyweights have partnered to better understand the issues surrounding mobile health privacy and security policies and to identify gaps before scaling mHealth globally. Law firm Baker & McKenzie, Merck, the mHealth Alliance and the Thomson Reuters Foundation are tackling two of the top barriers to the expansion of mHealth, as outlined in a 2011 World Health Organization report, namely data privacy and security and the protection of individual health information.
From http://www.fiercemobilehealthcare.com/story/recommendations-global-mhealth-privacy-and-security-policies-come-2013/2012-11-26, November 29, 2012
Human Body Could Power Smartphones, Pacemakers, Devices
Roger Highfield of the Science Museum Group writes that scientists are already at work on a number of such devices, with the first wave of human-powered generators hitting the market in the next two years. The applications would range from personal health to entertainment. For example, pacemaker batteries must be replaced every few years. But a pacemaker running off a piezoelectric current could provide a permanent energy source, reducing the need for risky and expensive operations.
From http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/sideshow/human-body-could-power-smartphones-pacemakers-other-devices-010733594.html, November 29, 2012
USA: National Federation of the Blind Announces National Reading Media Assessment
The National Federation of the Blind (NFB), the oldest and largest organization of blind people in the United States and the leading advocate for Braille literacy, today announced that its National Reading Media Assessment (NRMA) is now available. Developed and tested over a three-year period in collaboration with the Professional Development and Research Institute on Blindness at Louisiana Tech University, the NRMA is the first nationally validated assessment of its kind for youth with low vision. The assessment was developed to determine the most appropriate reading medium for students who are blind or have low vision, to ensure that the reading medium is appropriately identified both for current and future need, and to ensure that student success is not hampered by incorrect identification of literacy needs.
From http://globalaccessibilitynews.com/2012/11/23/assessment-to-determine-best-reading-medium-for-students-with-vision-disabilities/, November 27, 2012