[Accessibility] Sec2b Item 8: Alternative Interface Access Protocol

Janina Sajka janina at rednote.net
Mon Sep 8 13:14:39 PDT 2003

	8.)	Alternative Interface Access Protocol (AIAP)

The Alternative Interface Access Protocol (AIAP) is being developed by a technical committee of the InterNational Committee for Information Technology
Standards(see www.v2access.org). The "AIAP-URC is a standard interconnection protocol that allows users to control a mass-market device/service
(target). The URC may be a dedicated device or a feature running on a computer, a cell phone, an Assistive Technology, or other device. The key to this
approach is that the target projects a presentation-independent version of its user interface (UI) which is rendered as a concrete user interface by the
URC. The concrete UI may be visual, speech-based, braille-based, or in some other form. If desired, the manufacturer may also provide customized
concrete UIs to optimize aesthetics and usability for certain classes of users or devices. The structure of a V2 user interface definition is intended
to facilitate the use of intelligent software agents to control services and devices in the future."

A particular benefit of this technology is the XML standard whereby two devices can negotiate, in a transport independent manner, the interface that is
appropriate to a particular user. This standard will be particularly important for use in public access systems to provide user appropriate interfaces
rather than only a single user interface as is the case today. It will also be useful for providing a defined mechanism whereby a user's PDA (or similar
device) can serve as an alternate interface to a public access system and to the full range of consumer devices such as thermostats, kitchen appliances,
laundry facilities, and home security and entertainment systems..

Without this (or a similar) universal remote console (URC)technology public access and consumer technologies are likely to become even less accessible
to an ever wider range of users than they are today. Users with disabilities are often unable to use public kiosks such as ATMs, airline boarding pass
systems, etc., because they cannot use the default user interfaces provided by such systems. The INCITS V2 specs are designed to provide these
interfaces directly or to negotiate, over a secure wireless transport-independent channel with the user's personal device to provide service.

The V2Committee expects to have a candidate 1.0 specification available for ANSI certification early in 2004. We propose to adopt relevant portions of
their specifications.

				Janina Sajka, Director
				Technology Research and Development
				Governmental Relations Group
				American Foundation for the Blind (AFB)

Email: janina at afb.net		Phone: (202) 408-8175

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