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W3C talks accessibility in report on web and television convergence

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The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) held its Second Web and TV Workshop in February, where key priorities about web and TV convergence were discussed.

The workshop, held in February this year, resulted in the publication of a report by the W3C including but not limited to the following:

  • Home networking and second-screen scenarios
  • The role of metadata and relation to Semantic Web technology
  • Ensuring that convergent solutions are accessible
  • Possible extensions to HTML5 for television

The release of this report is designed to create some consistency in how televisions are incorporating online content. 


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Captioned video files now supported in PowerPoint

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Two new Microsoft Office 2010 Accessibility Add-ins have been released, one to add closed captions to video and audio files included in a PowerPoint presentation, and the other to save a Word 2010 file in DAISY format.

For the first time, you can add closed captions to video and audio files included in your PowerPoint presentation using the new Subtitling Add-in for Microsoft PowerPoint (STAMP).


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Senate backs classroom captioning

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The Senate this week came out in support of funding for new technologies that will benefit students who are Deaf and hearing impaired as well as students in general.

Senator Mitch Fifield co-sponsored the motion to fund a National Schools Pilot Program of Ai-Media’s technology program Ai-Live. This is a program that allows for real-time captioning in the classroom to assist Deaf and hearing impaired students to participate more fully in learning.

This program is one of the initiatives in Australia intended to bring captions into the classroom, thereby assisting students who are Deaf and hearing impaired as well as many other students.


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Deaf entrepreneur wins American leadership award

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Catharine McNally, a co-founder of Keen Guides, has been awarded one of two Paul G. Hearne Leadership Awards for 2011 by the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD).

Developed after a disappointing experience in a museum for McNally, who is Deaf, Keen Guides is a mobile application that provides accessible video tours of museums, colleges and public venues, with the objective of producing cultural experiences that appeal to everyone.

The Keen Guides application, available on iPhone and Android devices, applies universal design principles, offering an educational, entertaining and accessible alternative to standard audio and live tours.


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US court rules that football games must be fully captioned

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American football team the Washington Redskins are now required to caption all game content broadcast over public address systems, including song lyrics.

Last week the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a previous ruling, stating that song lyrics contributed to the general atmosphere of the games, therefore all people, including those who are Deaf or hearing impaired, must be able to access them.


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