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Standardization as a prerequisite for accessibility of electronic text information for persons who cannot use printed material

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3 Author(s)
Bauwens, B. ; ESAT, Katholieke Univ., Leuven, Heverlee, Belgium ; Evenepoel, F. ; Engelen, J.J.

Describes the whole field of accessible text formats for reading-impaired persons. A broad overview of existing code systems ranging from ill-defined basic ASCII up to 16- and 32-bit multilingual character sets (ISO and Unicode versions) are given, as well as details on the standardized ISO formats for structured documents (SGML and ODA). In order to underline the importance of electronic text standardization, a few current systems, both diskette and electronic mail implementations, are reviewed. Within this framework, the authors situate the activities of the ICADD committee, an international body that promotes the accessibility of text information through the use of global standards for structured texts. In Europe, the TIDE-CAPS project is mainly concerned with document access for the print-disabled. An SGML DTD for newspapers, called CAPSNEWS, has been developed; this DTD describes a fully general newspaper structure. This DTD also has some special provisions for visually impaired persons, which enables them to navigate through digital newspapers by means of large print on screen, voice synthesis, and Braille display readers. The benefits of structured document formats, both for the print-disabled and for publishers, are stressed throughout a new European Horizontal Action TIDE Program, HARMONY, which started in Autumn 1994

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Rehabilitation Engineering, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:3 ,  Issue: 1 )