[Accessibility] NSF Draft: For Today's Call

Janina Sajka janina at rednote.net
Mon May 3 08:13:49 PDT 2004

Thanks for the paragraphs. I am working them in now with the exception of the statement about Gnopernicus. I don't think that one is advisable at the moment especially as the other statements wouldn't be controversial.

Peter Korn writes:
> Greetings,
> Here's a couple of quick paragraphs to add to the "Outcomes and Benefits" 
> section of the NSF grant proposal.  They could use more wordsmithing...
> Peter
> ---------------------------------------------
> Vendors and developers of assistive technologies (and through them the 
> users they serve) who will be able to build much richer products for people 
> with disabilities based on these standards, and be able to deploy those 
> assistive technologies on a wider range of computing systems thanks to 
> these standards. Furthermore, because the accessibility standards being 
>    developed are explicitly supported standards within the platform, assistive 
> technologies for compliant systems will no longer need to hack the system 
> in order to implement their functionality, freeing precious development 
> time to focus on the user experience.
> There are already several assistive technologies that are taking advantage 
> of components of this emerging standard and serve to illustrate these 
> benefits. The Gnopernicus screen reader/magnifier uses AT-SPI and because 
> of that has reached a high level of functionality with a broad range of 
> applications in far less time than similar screen readers for Microsoft 
> Windows and Macintosh. GOK, the dynamic GNOME On-Screen Keyboard uses 
>  AT-SPI and also the XKB functionality to provide a set of access features 
> that go far beyond any other on-screen keyboard for any other computer, 
> resulting in dramatic speed improvements for single switch and head-mouse 
> users (easily 5 times faster control of dialog boxes, web browsing, text 
> editing, and numerous other tasks).  Dasher is an innovative and cross 
> platform text entry application optimized for eye-gaze and head tracker 
> systems from the University of Cambridge.  The most recent releases of 
> Dasher utilize AT-SPI to provide for control of the desktop.  The Dasher 
> folks would very much like to implement the same control features on all 
> desktop computers, and they will have a much easier time of doing this if 
> more desktop systems implement the standards this group is developing.  It 
> is also noteworthy that Dasher comes from University research, and has been 
> incorporated into the GNOME 2.6 desktop and from there into various 
> GNU/Linux distributions - a rapid example of technology transfer made 
> possible in part by the user of open standards.

				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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