Why BrailleNet?
BrailleNet was set up to encourage the use of Internet as support for school, University and vocational training for visually disabled people.
A BrailleNet Site on the server maintenance inter University of Jussieu Installation of computer stations connected to the Internet in schools incorporating Visual handicapped children Participation in the international project Web Accessibility Initiative Coordination of initiatives of institutions such as exchange documents, books, course information Bulletin will be set up on the Internet on the website of BrailleNet ( training of students , students, teachers and parents to navigation on Internet Participation at the show Autonomic techniques: schools and associations will ensure animations with students or students on the following themes: virtual library, creation of a Web site by Visual handicapped pupils, Tactison, Adaptation of University courses, read a newspaper, looking for information on the Web, distance education. Development of tools for accessing the data and services available on the Web.
June 1996 launch of the idea of an Internet project at an informal meeting organised on the living room Autonomic96 and on the occasion of the Symposium on “New Technologies in the Education of the Visual” July 1996: first meeting of project BrailleNet at Pierre and Marie Curie University April 1997: partnership agreement signed between AFEI, ANPEA, EUROBRAILLE, FAF, and University Pierre et Marie Curie
Consortium BrailleNet
December 1997: deposit of the statutes of the Association BrailleNet ANPEA, EUROBRAILLE, FAF, and CREARE. March 1998: constituent Assembly of the Association BrailleNet. Election of the first CA
Association BrailleNet
implemented in schools, universities and training centres incorporating visual disability of means enabling them to access the information via the Internet. develop and/or adapt the available teaching materials on the web coordinate the initiatives of institutions and associations involved in the project promote the development and/or adaptation of all software, and all materials adapted for visually disabled people for Internet access.
The BrailleNet Association also wants to be a meeting and a forum for discussion between stakeholders involved in the use of Internet in school and vocational training.
The status of association responds to the concern to evolve towards more openness and welcome new partners of different status and from backgrounds varied but interested in a common topic.

Summary of recosting of the release site

The Liberation of Web site is an information site. The information provided on the site is mainly composed of texts. Navigational aids are present in almost all of the pages in the form of search engines. The structure of the site is not completely homogeneous because pages are divided into frames while others have a simpler structure. For users with only a partial view of the screen, which cannot read that a frame at a time, the navigation in these pages is more complex.

Most of the graphic elements of pages other than the home page have no textual alternative. For this reason, the site is still accessible insufissamment.

Detail of the assessment

Home page:
The first page shows the information on 3 then 4 columns.

-The left column acts as a summary and offers different sections of the site.
-Now, most of the images have a textual alternative. However, graphics still not are discussed (for example, a few banners, commercial space, icons…).
-Some technical aid interpret differently the order of articles page
-Multiple hyperlinks are not quite explicit (e.g. “daily”), found several times on the page. Links must be able to keep the sense out of context.
-Each “daily” link refers directly to a specific article but to a page. The user must therefore visit this page and find the article at the link in the homepage.
-This first page has hundreds of links.

Other pages:

-Most of the images used (images links, images for presentation) are still not commented out.
-Images made of clickable areas have no alternative text (including the bar of navigation at the top of each page).
-The site contains several scripts which the alternative comment returns an image that is unfortunately not commented.
-Some pages are divided into several frames (from two to three frames), whose name is often little explicit for a user who cannot read than a frame at a time (difficulties of memorization and understanding). There is a general textual alternative for browsers that do not support frames (NOFRAME tag) but it returns a text warning and does not generate any link to the pages of the site.
-This site overall lack of homogeneity since only a few pages contain frames (headings “Portraits” and “Headlines”).
-Presence of many little explicit links (see “Bounces” where the links are on the months of the year and not the full date).
-The site remains visible when the created for the Web page formatting is disabled. (colors, contrasts, choice and size of fonts…). However, the “Music” section offers an internal navigation bar which differs visually from other pages: the colours used (low contrast) can interfere with the reading of some users.

The homepage of this site has been improved since the last assessment.
To optimize the navigability of the site, it would be useful to add a plan of the site accessible from this home page.
On the other hand, the General accessibility of the site would be greatly improved if:

-all graphic elements were accompanied by a textual comment (navigation bar internal…)
-links were formulated to be understood out of context

Association Braille

The new site AccessiWeb marks the willingness of the association BrailleNet to provide effective assistance to all those who are concerned with the accessibility of the Web:

Present issues…

detail standards…

show implementation solutions.

This site offers in particular resources (information online), a working group (sleep and research technology) and the Label AccessiWeb (certification of sites).

Association BrailleNet
Cell Web accessibility
UPMC box 23
9 quai Saint Bernard
75252 PARIS cedex 05
+ 33 (0) 1 44 27 26 25

Projects in Cooperation with Braille

Project AcceSciTech – Access to scientific and technical documents for visually disabled people (2011-2014)

The AcceSciTech project seeks to solve the problems of access to scientific and technical literature for people with vision impairments, and more broadly, for people prevented play on the classic edition media. Scientific and technical literature, means a set of varied documents (books, articles, handouts, transparencies, etc) printed or digital, containing complex elements such as mathematical formulas, curves, tables, diagrams or schemas. These documents can treat ‘hard sciences’, or social sciences and Humanities, and apply as well to the general public if it is popular books only to specialists in the case of academic textbooks.

Visually impaired people access the written by touch using braille (static when it is printed on paper or dynamic when it is displayed on a braille terminal), listening to the text read by a narrator or a synthetic voice, or sometimes by the sight by reading the text in large type. These modes are complementary: for example, it is useful for a blind student learning to read a sentence in braille while he listens to it. DAISY and EPUB formats will be so implemented in this project, because allowing to separate the content of a document from the way it is presented, they provide the necessary framework for the simultaneous return of same contents in different modes. In addition, these formats offer the possibility of structuring a document in order to make the easy consultation, allowing the user to navigate easily and to decide whether they want to be aware of some elements considered optional as notes or page numbers.

Focus on the problems of access to scientific and technical literature, this is for example to ask:

How to effectively produce highly structured documents from various sources (books scanned, files provided by a Publisher, etc.)?

What editing environment set up so that experts gradually adapting a document containing a large number of images to describe?

How to render a mathematical formula in braille and sound manner?

How to decrease the time required for the taking of knowledge of a complex document rendered on a braille display?

In France, the law allows bodies approved to ask publishers files sources used in the production of printed works subject to copyright and to broadcast a version adapted for the disabled. Remain to create the technical prerequisites for a significant increase in available supply in order to operate this favourable legal environment. This is what attaches to the project by developing tools to automate the maximum production of scientific papers and techniques adapted.

The creation of fully accessible documents requires human intervention, for example to describe images. This is why AcceSciTech also deals with the problems related to editing such documents by qualified speakers, by proposing a Wiki collaborative environment dedicated to the adaptation.

The documents will be disseminated via the francophone digital library BNFA to which the project aims to integrate new features for customizing content based on the needs of the user.

Finally, a tool for multimodal return of complex documents will be proposed, implemented on a Notepad braille with a hardware device for detecting the movement of the user’s fingers, creating new opportunities to improve the knowledge of structured content. Tests will be conducted with Visual deficient users.