DAISY TechWatch: June 11th, 2017 Issue Published


Enjoy the latest issue of the DAISY TechWatch news brief, now posted to the DAISY Consortium website. Our main goal is to inform DAISY Members and Supporters about new e-reading technologies and related developments.

Free EasyReader App for iOS Now Available


Dolphin Computer Access has launched EasyReader for iOS. Users can adjust text size, colors and contrast, and add speech to text-based books and newspapers. Choose from thousands of audio books available immediately. Readers with dyslexia can read using dyslexia friendly fonts and colors with perfectly synchronized text and audio.


Access 21 digital libraries in 70 countries, including popular accessible library services Bookshare®, NFB-NEWSLINE®, RNIB Bookshare, Legimus, NLB and Vision Australia. More information is provided on the Dolphin Computer Access website.

Rebranded: Accessible Books Consortium Global Book Service


The Accessible Books Consortium (ABC) has launched its rebranded "ABC Global Book Service" (previously known as the TIGAR Service) that enables libraries for the blind in different countries to exchange books in accessible formats.


Prior to the Marrakesh Treaty being implemented in a country, such cross border exchange of accessible books could only happen with the authorization of the copyright owner. Where libraries for the blind are in countries that have implemented the Marrakesh Treaty, this service now enables the exchange of books to happen without such authorization. This makes the whole process more efficient.


"This ground-breaking Treaty is great news for people with print disabilities around the world who will have access to many, many more books. And for our libraries, each accessible version we can acquire through international exchange, means less duplication of effort and more choice for our users! Thank you ABC for the systems and processes that facilitate this exchange for us." - Margaret McGrory, Vice President, Canadian National Institute for the Blind.


More information is provided on the Accessible Books Consortium website.

CNIB Calls for Federal Accessible Book Production Strategy


As National AccessAbility Week progresses, CNIB is calling on the federal government to develop a long-term plan to fund and produce more accessible books in Canada.


"Thousands of new books are published in Canada each year, but as someone with sight loss, I can only access a fraction of them," said Diane Bergeron, CNIB's executive director of national and international affairs. "That's not accessibility – it's exclusion. And it has to change."


More than three million Canadians live with a physical, visual or learning disability. For these Canadians, books in accessible formats such as audio, braille and electronic text represent a lifeline to literacy. They are critical to their participation in education, employment, and community life.


However, Canadian publishers are not required by law to produce their books in accessible formats. Only a small percentage of all published trade books are available in these formats – most produced by CNIB and only partially funded by federal grants. More information is provided in the CNIB press release.

DAISY TechWatch: May 30th, 2017 Issue is Now Online


Read the new DAISY TechWatch, now available at http://www.daisy.org/techwatch-2017-05b. Learn how to convert EPUB to Braille with EasyConverter, discover the new features of the KNFB Reader and more.

Global Accessibility Awareness Day: Collaboration is key


The target audience of the Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) is the design, development, usability, and related communities. These communities build, shape, fund and influence technology and its use. While people may be interested in making technology accessible and usable by persons with disabilities, they often do not know how or where to start. Awareness comes first. Collaboration should follow.


Dolphin Computer Access, a UK based assistive technology company and DAISY Friend, has been working with another DAISY Member, Swiss accessible book library SBS (Swiss Library for the Blind, Visually Impaired and Print Disabled) to deliver the platform behind their new reading app; aimed at the SBS blind, visually impaired and print-disabled user base.


SBS Leser Plus, a free app available on devices running the iOS operating system, will enable SBS library members to access and read a range of content designed to meet their visual needs. Users can choose colours, text size and highlights to suit their individual preferences, and built in speech along with VoiceOver and braille display compatibility ensures access for all levels of sight.


SBS Leser Plus is powered by Dolphin’s EasyReader software, which has been exclusively designed and developed in house by Dolphin Computer Access and personalised to meet SBS’s needs. Under Dolphin’s “Your library app, powered by Dolphin EasyReader” program this is the first time that EasyReader has been used by a third party library provider for their own proprietary reading app, and marks a significant move forward for both organisations, as well as those who will benefit from the service.


Flavia Kippele, CEO of SBS, said “We are enthusiastic about the app: it is reliable and easy to use. And what is best: the collaboration with Dolphin was extremely pleasant and fruitful.”


Dolphin Sales Director Steve Bennett, explains more. “Our EasyReader software makes accessing reading materials even easier, by offering a direct interface to library content rather than having to navigate to a website. By choosing EasyReader as the platform for their app, SBS are giving their library users flexibility in terms of device and location, as well as an easier route to their considerable stock of accessible books.”


SBS Leser Plus is available now on iOS, exclusively to SBS library members. Any third party queries regarding the “Your library app, powered by Dolphin EasyReader” program should be directed to Dolphin Computer Access at their Worcester Head Office. More information is provided on the Dolphin Computer Access website.

White Paper - "e-Accessibility in a Connected World"


BrailleNet announced the publication of their 2017 White Paper published in partnership with G3ict entitled e-Accessibility in a Connected World.


This White Paper picks up and builds on the topics addressed at the 10th European e-Accessibility Forum, held on May 30th, 2016 at the Cité des Sciences in Paris. Over 180 professionals, association members and scholars from around the world gathered on this occasion to discuss the potential of the Internet of Things to bridge the digital divide. Nine of the conference speakers and one further expert, all actively involved in e-Accessibility or the Internet of Things, accepted our invitation to update their opinions and points-of-view expressed on this occasion in order to shape a review on this topic.


Enjoy this publication and attend the 11th European e-Accessibility Forum on the topic of e-Accessible Culture. For more details and to register your place, visit http://eaf2017.braillenet.org/en.

EU compromise = better access to books for blind and other disabled people


The negotiators of the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission reached a compromise on draft legislation to implement the Marrakesh Treaty in the European Union. The objective of the proposals, made by the Commission as part of the ongoing modernization of the EU copyright law, is to facilitate access to published works for persons who are blind, have other visual impairments or are otherwise print disabled. The deal will be now subject to the formal approval by the two EU co-legislators.


Following the political compromise, Vice-President for the Digital Single Market Andrus Ansip said: "I am delighted that EU copyright rules will now be adapted to allow visually impaired and people with reading disabilities to access a wider range of reading material in the EU and in third countries that they can use for their education, work and entertainment. I am particularly pleased that our Digital Single Market strategy creates more social inclusion. And I am also confident that this compromise today will pave the way for a rapid ratification of the Marrakesh treaty by the EU”.


More information is provided in the European Commission press release.

eBook Production: Upcoming Training Sessions in India


The DAISY Consortium in partnership with Bookshare announced the dates for “Advanced training in e-book production." This three-day workshop will be held May 15th to May 17th, 2017.


For the benefit of our friends from East India, the workshop is being conducted in Ranchi, Jharkhand.


The workshop will cover:

  • Introduction to DAISY
  • Tools for reading DAISY content
  • Basic structuring of a Word document for DAISY Production
  • Use of Save as DAISY
  • Introduction to Tobi
  • Introduction to Jutoh
  • Adding metadata to an EPUB
  • Introduction to Sugamya Pustakalaya and Bookshare


Who should attend:


This workshop is specially designed for those organizations and individuals who are interested in e-book production for distribution to people with print disabilities, librarians serving the blind and print disabled, educators, as well as production staff of government organizations involved in design and production of textbooks.

Coordinator: Satyajit Sing [Resource Centre head – Sight Savers, Ranchi, satyajeet06(at)gmail.com] register on or before May 8th, 2017.

Using iBooks with VoiceOver

iBooks is an e-book reading application developed by Apple, Inc. for its iPad, iPhone and iPod touch running iOS 4 or later. It can be installed free of charge from the iTunes App Store. For more information see DAISYpedia article iBooks Overview.

Voiceover performs just like any other app in iBooks. Most Voiceover gestures are supported and it is also possible to navigate the book text by words and lines.

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