DAISY Consortium's News Brief - # 2017-08a
Enjoy a concise selection of digital publishing news. Our main goal is to inform DAISY Members and Supporters about new e-reading technologies and related developments.

Upcoming event – IFLA Conference

IFLA World Library and Information Congress. 19–25 August 2017 Wrocław, Poland.
The IFLA conference, for those who have not previously encountered it, is a very large 6 day event running 248 sessions with global perspectives on everything related to libraries. This year presentations of interest include three perspectives on “Access to Programs and Conferences for People with Disabilities”, and four presentations on the theme “Marrakesh - The Road to Implementation - Libraries Serving Persons with Print Disabilities”. The full programme is available on the IFLA conference website.

Learning Tools for Office 365, and Edge with EPUB support

The Immersive Reader Learning Tools which are currently available for OneNote are now also available as Learning Tools for Word Online and coming to the desktop version of Word 2016 later this year. Aimed at assisting learners with reading difficulties like dyslexia and those learning a second language, the tools aids student in keeping their attention on the content offering text to speech, highlighting and presentation customisation.
The recent Windows 10 Creators update also brings EPUB support for the Edge browser, with Read Aloud automatically installed to highlight and voice the text. The customisation options are designed to support readers with dyslexia and related reading difficulties, but may also be helpful to users with low vision and sight loss.

Seeing AI - the future of accessibility?

The new Seeing AI app from Microsoft for iOS is specifically designed for blind and low vision users. The app leverages Microsoft Artificial Intelligence Cloud Services to process what can be seen by the camera, offering a series of user selected channels to identify objects, describe scenes, scan text or documents and even identify people.

The app has received glowing reviews, but perhaps most excitingly it provides a practical example that Cloud based Artificial Intelligence services could be deployed to digitise and mark-up documents as well as generate image descriptions. The technology is still relatively new, so may not be ready for mainstream application, but through the regular use of tools like Seeing AI the background services will be exposed to more data and ultimately learning to be more accurate.

What's New: Links to Notable News Articles and Media

That's it for this edition of Techwatch, but it doesn't have to end here. You can: