Blind/vision impaired Digital Technology & Online Media news

Top five podcast episodes of 2013

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Each week, we help produce a segment for Vision Australia Radio. Presented by community broadcasting legend Roberta Ashby, these offer a special opportunity to share developments in technology with people who don’t necessarily spend a lot of time online. Here, we share some of the favourites broadcast in the past year.

All episodes come with transcripts.


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Highlights of 2013 – a Christmas card from Western Australia

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Western Australia, with its strong community groups and thriving accessibility scene, contributes a huge amount to Australia’s progress towards access. Here, Media Access Australia’s Western Australia manager Dr Scott Hollier provides an update on the key accessibility events that have taken place over 2013.

In March the largest web accessibility-specific event ever held in Western Australia took place with with the Perth Web Accessibility BarCamp. Run as a more casual ‘unconference’ with approximately 100 people in attendance, there were great presentations across all areas of accessibility, including a humorous debate on whether web accessibility is being taken seriously. The event was very well organised with Gary Barber at the helm and it demonstrated just how much work is being done across all local sectors.

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British online video provider improves accessibility

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The video on demand provider YouView has announced a range of improvements to make its services easier to use for blind and vision impaired people, as well as those with a motor skill or cognitive impairment.

The changes include a new zoom function that works with all aspects of the program guide, and which the company described as a UK first. The free YouView app for iOS and Android now has text-to-speech navigation of the program guide, while the app is also now available in a high-contrast version.


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Highlights of 2013: Australian made apps

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Australia has made a huge contribution to the world of assistive apps this year. As part of our Highlights series, we look back at just a few.

Glassbrick

In January, Media Access Australia reported that a new screen magnifier for Microsoft Windows had been released. Glassbrick is a free magnifier made by Brisbane-based mobile game studio Halfbrick.  The software is lightweight so that it works with heavier programs such as games without slowing the computer down.


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