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How a Smart Home Empowers People with Disabilities
While advances in personal technology continue at a rapid pace, at times their designers seem to forget about the population that could perhaps benefit from it the most.
From NBC News, May 15, 2017

Low-Cost Portable Device that Converts Text to Braille in Real Time
Six engineering undergraduate students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have designed a device called Tactile which is a portable device that converts text to braille in real time. Their first prototype was created in a 15-hour hackathon in early 2016. Since that time, the device has undergone extensive development. Now, it’s the size of a candy bar and completely portable. What really sets Tactile apart from other braille translators, though, is its low cost.
From Futurism, May 11, 2017

Robotic Technology for Children with Disabilities
A robot is changing the way children with disabilities attend school. The telepresence bot allows participation from the comfort of a home.The technology was originally designed to help professionals who work from home or remotely feel part of the office environment, but works just as well in schools.
From SMA News Today, May 10, 2017

Building Accessibility into IT Procurement
For many years, Michigan State University in East Lansing has had a clear policy about what is expected in terms of technology accessibility — whether for a faculty member teaching online or for an administrative department buying computers and software. But in 2015, MSU revamped how accessibility is integrated into information technology procurement, giving purchasing officers a risk-assessment rubric and a new accountability structure.
From Campus Technology, May 10, 2017

Students, Teachers Together Develop Software to Make Astronomy Accessible to the Blind
Afterglow Access is a new software that will make astronomy more accessible to blind people. This research initiative will engage students with visual impairments as well as sighted students and their teachers. The research will also in effect advance knowledge about student learning related to computational thinking, the role of computation in astronomy and software design, and how participation influences student attitudes and beliefs about who can engage in computing and STEM subjects.
From University of Chicago News, May 09, 2017

5 Essential Website Accessibility Tips For Financial Institutions in the United States
Conforming with accessibility guidelines as per the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) may get complex for financial institutions, especially as regulations are yet to be formalized for the public sector under ADA. However, in recent times lawsuits have been filed against companies over their websites, many of them financial industry. Here are some tips that can help prepare for accessibility conformance by ensuring usability for all account holders.
From The Financial Brand, May 08, 2017

New Touchable Tablet Guides Persons with Visual Impairment
Researchers at Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland have developed a lightweight and reconfigurable touchscreen tablet capable of generating shapes and maps. The tablet helps persons with visual impairment find their way around unfamiliar places using their fingers. It quickly forms shapes and relief maps that users can then explore with their fingers, using their sense of touch.
From Daily News & Analysis, May 07, 2017

Windows for Residents with Dementia
Dutch designers have developed interactive art screens to help nursing home residents reconnect in a more meaningful way with family, caregivers and the outside world. VENSTER shows pre-recorded calming content, such as a nearby park.
From mcknights.com, May 06, 2017

Designing for Disability and Breaking Barriers
People with disabilities represent a vast market that is often overlooked and largely untapped. It is a market ripe with opportunities for innovative companies, including small businesses, many of which are founded by those closest to the market, people affected by disabilities, who create their own solution to the daily challenges they face.
From The Guardian, May 05, 2017

Robots Help Embrace a More Human View of Disability
The digital age is shattering barriers, and what used to the norm is now being challenged. The field of human-computer interaction is about how things work between humans and computers or robots. Today, a robot "buddy" can help a person with autism navigate the nuances of workplace politics. In contrast, the digital world is all about systems.
From Phys.org, May 04, 2017

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