Accessible books, with or without speech synthesis

Original Author: 
Pratsam Team

Pratsam Producer is a solution for the production of accessible digital publications such as DAISY books, either with or without audio. Pratsam Producer supports the production of publications through speech synthesis. It is an excellent way to quickly and automatically produce accessible newspapers.

Pratsam Producer Workflow Illustration

DAISYpedia Categories: 

Finalists Announced for ABC 2017 International Excellence Awards


The finalists for the 2017 Accessible Books Consortium International Excellence Award for Accessible Publishing have been announced. The six short-listed organizations come from all corners of the globe.


The ABC Award recognizes two categories: publishers and project initiatives. The winners in each category will be announced at the awards ceremony to be held at the London Book Fair on the evening of Tuesday, March 14, 2017.


The six finalists are:

Publisher category

  • Picsterbooks, South Africa
  • SAGE Publishing, U.K.
  • VitalSource Technologies, U.S.

Project initiative category

  • Jisc, U.K.
  • Tata Consultancy Services, India
  • Tiflonexos, Argentina

More information is available on the ABC website.

The Way Forward for an Egyptian Ratification of the Marrakesh Treaty


The Bibliotheca Alexandrina is holding the "On the Way Forward for an Egyptian Ratification of the Marrakesh Treaty" Symposium on February 12th from 8:30 am to 6:00 pm. The conference is organized by the Digital Talking Book Section (BA Library Sector) in cooperation with the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) Section on Libraries Serving Persons with Print Disabilities (LPD) and the World Blind Union.


The symposium aims to bring together relevant stakeholders from Egyptian library and visually impaired communities with appropriate government, parliamentary, and legislative leaders to come up with an Egyptian solution to the lack of accessible books and educational resources for the blind and visually impaired people in Egypt.


More information is available on the Bibliotheca Alexandrina website.

Tobi brings update to French language pack


DAISY Consortium is pleased to announce the incremental release of Tobi, the next-generation open source multimedia production tool.


With Tobi, users can produce books with full text and audio, conforming to both the DAISY 3 and mainstream EPUB 3 (Media Overlays) specifications. Tobi is unique as it allows adding accessibility enhancements, such as image descriptions, to the mainstream EPUB 3 publications.


Version comes with localization updates for users of the French version. Many thanks to European Digital Reading Lab for the translation.

To learn more about Tobi and to download the latest version, please visit the Tobi project area at


For more information about the features and bug fixes, please visit the change log at


The Tobi team would like to thank all contributors and supporters for their continuous support.

W3C and IDPF Officially Combine


The vision to align Publishing and Web technologies to create a new roadmap for the future of publishing became official today. The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) have combined organizations. W3C is the global standards organization that develops foundational Web technologies such as HTML, CSS, SVG, XML and WCAG. IDPF developed the EPUB standard used globally for accessible ebooks and digital publications.


George Kerscher, Chief Innovations Officer for the DAISY Consortium and President of IDPF since 2010 commented, "By combining our organizations, we not only align our technology roadmaps but also accelerate the adoption of content that is natively accessible and device-friendly for all types of publishing, whether you are reading on the Web or offline."


The full press release is available on the W3C website.

Pipeline 2 Version 1.10 Released


Version 1.10 of the DAISY Pipeline 2 is now available for download. The following alternative packages are proposed:

All distributions include the new graphical user interface (GUI), all conversion scripts, and a native command line tool (CLI).


If you have any problems or identify some bugs, please report them to the Pipeline team using our issue tracker on GitHub:


For details, please refer to release notes:

User documentation is now available on a new project website:


The website's content, including developers' documentation, will be further updated in the coming months. Feedback is always appreciated!

CELA: Listen to a sample of an audio book before you check it out!


The Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA, Canada) patrons can now listen to a sample of an audio book before they check it out. The CELA catalogue features three-minute audio samples of all of their books. Each title in their catalogue has a new link called “Listen to a sample” which allows patrons and library staff to preview titles by selecting the link to hear a short three-minute sample from the book. Player buttons allow to pause, stop and increase or decrease the volume of the sample. More information is provided on the CELA website.

Section 508 Refresh Update


The U.S. Access Board held a public briefing on the ICT Final Rule. The effective date for enforcement and compliance with the new Final Rule will be January 18, 2018; 12 months from the day it was published in the U.S. Federal Register.


The U.S. Access Board will hold a free webinar on the ICT rule on Jan. 31st. Register online. Another session will be held on February 2nd, review details for registration.

eBooks and EPUB Accessibility


At the upcoming event eBooks and EPUB Accessibility on March 23rd, 2017, speakers will discuss how the accessibility specification can help achieve greater ease of access. The latest updates to EPUB will also be discussed.


This event will be hosted under the auspices of the National Federation of the Blind (NFB) Center of Excellence in Nonvisual Access to Education, Public Information, and Commerce (CENA), with financial support through the Non-Visual Accessibility Initiative grant from the State of Maryland.




National Federation of the Blind Jernigan Institute

200 E. Wells Street

at Jernigan Place

Baltimore, MD 21210


Please register on the NFB website.

IDPF Members Approve EPUB 3.1 as an IDPF Recommended Specification


The IDPF Membership has unanimously approved EPUB 3.1 as a Recommended Specification, by a vote of 72 YES to zero NO votes.


The EPUB 3.1 revision introduces a new accessibility specification and an accessibility techniques document. Developed as part of EPUB 3.1 to provide guidance on making EPUB publications accessible, these new documents are designed to be equally applicable to older versions of EPUB 3. More information is provided on the IDPF website.


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