Digital technology

New updates by Twitter client app Twitterrific enhance accessibility for vision impaired users

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Twitterrific, a Mac OS X and iOS client for the social networking site Twitter, has launched a host of new and improved accessibility features for people who are blind or vision impaired for its app update yesterday.  This recent update has seen a vast improvement in the app’s use of VoiceOver and image sharing.

The Twitteriffic blue bird as a 3D representation

Accessibility improvements

According to iTunes, the accessibility improvements listed below have been made to the application.


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Movies with AD on iTunes, May 2016

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Last month we provided an up-to-date list of audio described (AD) movies in the Australian iTunes store. Some of the listed titles had specific versions that were marked: (For blind viewers). However, there have been some very recent changes to the way that some movies with AD are presented on Australian iTunes.

A computer tablet displaying a video library rests on the keyboard of an open laptop

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Netflix improves accessibility for the blind

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In a court settlement with the American Council of the Blind (ACB), Netflix has agreed to include more audio description on its streamed content and DVD rental services, as well as making its website and mobile applications accessible for blind people who use screen readers.

Little boy watching TV with his back towards us


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Unpublished


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Australia’s first disability-focused tech accelerator launched

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Australia’s first disability-focused impact accelerator, Remarkable, held its official launch event on 31 March at the University of Sydney. The Remarkable Accelerator program aims to work with inclusive start-up companies by using technology in innovative ways to improve the lives of people with disabilities.

Remarkable logo


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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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Artificial intelligence in the home with Amazon Echo

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The Amazon Echo is a newly released device that could greatly benefit people with vision or motor impairments, but its usability in Australia is currently very limited.

Amazon Echo device

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New tech developments give a glimpse of the future

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Research into access technology has become quite advanced, with more sophisticated products that are attempting to help people with disabilities in real-life situations. Two projects from Microsoft show how image recognition is developing.

Blue pulses and lines representing the internet

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Consultation on communications access

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The inclusion of accessibility features in many mainstream smartphones and tablets is a potential game changer in the delivery of special services for Deaf and hearing impaired people, according to the Department of Communications.

Woman using a smartphone

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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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