‘Aipoly Vision’ is a very useful object-and-colour recogniser app that helps the blind, vision-impaired, and colour blind to understand their surroundings. It does so by using artificial intelligence to recognise objects through a device’s camera and then announces the name of each object to the user.
The Aipoly(link is external) developers are on a self-declared mission to build scalable vision intelligence. They intend to add facial recognition to the Aipoly Vision app, whereby users will be able to enter the names of people visible in the camera frame for ongoing recognition. They have also indicated that the app will soon be able to be taught new objects. When pointed at an object which is not recognised, users will be able to enter the name of the object which will be remembered the next time that object is encountered.
This app is an excellent example of how emerging technology can make a positive difference to users right now, and it comes with an ‘intelligent torch’ feature which automatically turns on the device’s torch if the camera frame is too dark, allowing the app to work in low-light situations.
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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. Stabelfeldt says just the ability to charge a phone with a wheelchair didn’t even exist until a few years ago.
But features like Apple’s “Home” app allow Stabelfeldt to control a variety of smart accessories in his house — from door locks and window shades, to lights and his garage door. The best part for Stabelfeldt? He can command Apple’s intelligent digital assistant Siri to work it all.
A Game Changer
“We put a lot of time and effort into making sure our products are as accessible as possible for all users,” said Apple’s Sarah Herrlinger. She has worked at Apple for nearly 14 years and is their Senior Manager of accessibility policy and initiatives.
“For some people, doing something like turning on your lights or opening a blind or changing your thermostat might be seen as a convenience, but for others, that represents empowerment, and independence, and dignity,” she told NBC News.
“HomeKit and Switch Control and Siri have given me a lot of value and a lot of opportunities to demonstrate that I’m a quality man and I’m a man of integrity,” Todd Stabelfeldt. “To get up every day and go to work: Everybody’s valuable, everybody has worth, everybody should have the opportunity to demonstrate it.”
Freedom Scientific has recently released JAWS 18.0.2738, which incorporates several important improvements made between the JAWS February 2017 release and this mid April 2017 update, plus dozens of less revolutionary but very practical enhancements.
JAWS (Job Access With Speech) is the world’s most popular screen reader, developed for computer users whose vision loss prevents them from seeing screen content or navigating with a mouse. It allows blind and vision-impaired people to read the screen either with a text-to-speech output or by a refreshable Braille display.
The latest update resolved some minor issues within the software itself, as well as providing a long list of user enhancements and expanded features when using JAWS with Microsoft Office, Google Docs, on a variety of Web Browsers, and in Windows 10.
TED Talks on Designing for Disability: TED Talks (technology, entertainment and design) are short presentations delivered to live audiences by subject experts and recorded on video for later viewing online. The Designing for Disability playlist is 10 TED talks on good design, life hacks and smart technology to empower and include people with disability. The videos are free. See: https://www.ted.com/playlists/372/designing_for_disability
This idea started after I did a research on UX for autonomous cars or self-driving cars. I did some interviews with 4 people, one of them being blind. I was really surprised to know that she can fully take care of herself and go around using her phone and guide dog. She uses her phone and her dog as interfaces to do something that (unfortunately) she is not able to.
After the interviews, I started my UX research and then, another surprise: the aspects of UX for self-driving cars — which I noticed basically two:
- Visual design — “how can we let people know what the car sees?” Tons of (interesting) concepts of visual design to let people understand and see what the car sees while it’s driving itself.
- Affordances — “How can we make people interact with the car?” I have seen nice buttons, panels and clues that help people interact with the cars.
With those two main aspects in mind, I started questioning myself:
What about blind people? How will they use self-driving cars?
When most people think about accessibility in technology, their first thought may be about accessibility for blind or D/deaf people: captioning, visual descriptions or Braille conversion. Blind and D/deaf people aren’t the only ones who benefit from inclusive technology, though. Autistic people, people with learning disabilities, people with ADHD and other neurodivergent people also have access needs that site designers and developers can meet. Here are five ways you can make your websites and apps more accessible for neurodivergent people.
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Read full article at Source: 5 Ways to Make Your Web Content More Neurodiversity Inclusive | NOS Magazine
Designing for users with a broad range of abilities can bring challenges. But, before you start thinking “Great, more stuff to limit my rockstar designs” — recognize this: Smart designs aren’t created to impress your peers. Smart designs (and smart designers!) use design elements like color, placement, and interaction in very intentional ways to help site visitors accomplish their goals — while giving the user the most enjoyable experience possible.
1 . Start with Wireframes
Now you might be thinking “Duh! This is obvious.” But how often do you consider accessibility at this step? Designing for accessibility means considering all users from the start.
If web accessibility is new to you, the path ahead can seem overwhelming.
It’s not so bad. I promise!
You could chase perfection forever by building accessible products for every user imaginable. That’s no different from design and development more generally: there’s always room for improvement.
But when it comes to usability — and that includes accessibility — a product doesn’t need to be perfect to be practical. Even small changes can make a big difference.
So here are some tips for how to get started. This guide is written for front-end web developers who are new to accessibility, and it’s by no means comprehensive — but I hope it will help you start a longer journey of learning.
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Read full article at Source: Developers: get started with web accessibility – Medium
The Changing Places Consortium launched its campaign in 2006 on behalf of the over 1/4 of a million people who cannot use standard accessible toilets.This includes people with profound and multiple learning disabilities, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, as well as older people. To use the toilet in safety and comfort, many people need to be able to access a Changing Places, which have more space and the right equipment, including a height adjustable changing bench and a hoist.
Creating a collaborative, inclusive classroom has many moving parts and pieces—and finding the right balance can be challenging. As a special education teacher, I am constantly on the hunt for technology and tools that give students with disabilities an environment that is personalized, differentiated and yet as close to their peers’ experience as possible. I have been an itinerant teacher, a distance education math teacher at a residential school and currently a resource room teacher—without the resource room.
When I work with my students and determine how to meet their needs, I think a lot about their accommodations rather than their modifications. The outcomes for a student can have a very dramatic effect on their learning.
In my accompanying blog post, “Accommodations versus modifications in an inclusive classroom,” I outline the important differences between accommodations and modifications to accessibly personalizing student learning. With Windows 10 and Office 365—free for teachers and students—I have been able to find and use many of the accommodations that I have been looking for making consumption of materials, content creation, collaboration and organization possible for students using the same technology and tools as their peers.
These tools help my students to consume content, create content, collaborate inclusively and stay organized.
Curated by (Lifekludger)
Read full article at Source: Accessibility in the classroom—tools that impact my students – Office Blogs