Techniques

DIY 3D-printed tactile maps

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The expansion of affordable 3D printing into the mainstream has meant that people needing tactile versions of objects or printed material can access them more easily.

Man using a 3D printer connected to a laptop

Early adopters of the technology have been schools where diagrams, images and other visual information can be printed out for vision impaired students.

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Snapchat adds closed captioning support for Discover videos

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Social messaging app Snapchat has added closed captioning support for videos shared within its Discover section, allowing major publishers to share accessible video content with broad communities of smartphone users without access to audio content.

Right hand holding an iPhone 6 with Snapchat Discover displayed on screen. Image credit: Snapchat


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Australian Network on Disability seeks participants for Banking Accessibility Survey 2016

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The Australian Network on Disability (AND) is conducting a new survey to extend its research into the accessibility of banking services, encouraging people living with disability to participate. The survey aims to gain a stronger understanding of user experience when paying for goods and services.

Person signing in to an online banking app on a tablet device

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Social media for those with a disability gets 2016 update

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The ground-breaking 2012 ‘SociAbility’ review into social media for those with a disability has had a much anticipated update. The Media Access Australia website now includes important new information on the varying accessibility challenges and practical fixes across all popular social channels. Project leader Dr Scott Hollier believes that it is destined to be the go-to resource on social media for people with a disability and those who provide care, support and advice.

Social media icons with a magnifying glass on the words ‘social media’


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Accessible media preview from CSUN

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The annual International Technology and Persons with Disabilities Conference (commonly known as CSUN) starts on 21 March in San Diego, California. This year there is significant coverage around accessible media. Media Access Australia’s CEO, Alex Varley, previews some personal highlights.

Seated audience attending a conference

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More work needed for digital inclusion at home

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A newly-released report from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) lists the number of households with access to the internet at home as 7.7 million in the last financial year, representing 86% of all households, up 3% from 2012–13. However, a recent discussion paper shows that there are one million people with a reported disability who do not have internet access at home.

Left hand pressing a holographic play button

The ABS Household use of IT study, released on 18 February 2016, shows that the number of Australians accessing the net is continuing to rise, albeit at a slightly slower rate than in past years.

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Microsoft reveals accessibility goals for Windows 10 and Office 365

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Tech giant Microsoft has revealed its roadmap of accessibility features to be introduced in Windows 10 and Office 365 over the course of 2016. The announcement comes after a number of public statements outlining an increased commitment to inclusion of people with disabilities in its product offering and services.

Laptop running Windows 10


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Accessibility in the cloud – benefits, issues and trends

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As a new survey shows an increase in the use of the cloud in 2016, the impact of this on people with disabilities and impairments becomes ever more important. Media Access Australia has produced a white paper, Accessibility of Cloud Computing – current and future trends, which provides valuable insights into cloud accessibility.

Left hand holds a smartphone with floating squares emerging from the screen


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Video advertisements on Facebook to be auto-captioned

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Facebook will begin to roll out a new feature that will make auto-playing advertisements more accessible to people with a disability.

Man giving thumbs up whilst holding card with Facebook 'like' icon

Following the launch of auto-playing video advertisements, new captioning features are being introduced to increase user engagement. These new features by default make advertisements more accessible to users that have a disability.

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Service Providers Accessibility Guide now available via direct download

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Media Access Australia’s Service Providers Accessibility Guide, which received a significant update in October 2015, is now available to download directly in accessible PDF and Word formats via our Digital Accessibility Services website. The guide caters to service providers using practical, hands-on, step-by-step ways to effectively prepare and deliver content and communications for people with disabilities via computing and mobile devices.

Finger resting on an accessibility button on a computer keyboard

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