Accessibility

How inventing became a passion: Developing autonomous vehicles to help support healthy aging and people with disabilities

For more than 10 years, I have focused my research on creating accessible technology for people with disabilities. This led to my current research in designing solutions for the aging population whose cognitive and functional ability change over time. Over the weekend I had the opportunity to participate in the USPTO’s press event at SXSW, […]

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Q&A with Will Scott: Innovative Young Engineer applying AI to accessibility

Three IBM researchers have been named 2017 Innovative Young Engineers by the National Academy of Engineering (NAE). Griselda Bonilla, Kun Hun, and Will Scott joined the the nation’s 82 brightest young engineers to take part in the NAE’s 23rd annual US Frontiers of Engineering symposium. Engineers ages 30 to 45 who are performing exceptional engineering […]

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Q&A with the Great Nephew of Alan Turing

Carrying on the legacy of a famous relative is a no easy task, particularly for someone as renown as Alan Turing, who is widely considered to be the father of theoretical computer science and artificial intelligence. But this hasn’t stopped his great nephew James Turing and his parents from giving it a go. Several years ago […]

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Realizing a barrier-free society

Field experiment at a busy shopping district in Tokyo Tokyo’s underground consists of miles of pedestrian walkways, extensive shopping arcades and a subway network. It stretches for hundreds of kilometers between more than 200 subway stations. Even with a map and a good sense of direction, it is not necessarily an easy place to navigate. […]

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Cognitive machines assist independent living as we age

We’ve all had that so-called “senior moment.” Leaving your wallet at a restaurant. Forgetting where you put your house key. Or maybe it’s physical, like no longer being able to take the stairs up to your office at work. As we age, mental and physical challenges do creep up. And we need assistance to stay […]

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Bot with wooden body keeps lectures lively

Hand-made telepresence robot helps improve classroom communication “Today’s lecture is about cognitive computing, and its impact on… blah, blah, blah…” The lecturer begins to drone on. And, worse, the students and lecturer are not physically in the same classroom. But such is life in today’s era of remote, video conference-style higher education options. Without a […]

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Data science for a better world

Saška Mojsilović led the creation of the Ebola Open Data Jam in 2014. A community effort which helped to identify, inventory and classify all open data sources related to the Ebola outbreak, it provided governments, aid agencies and researchers with free and open access to valuable open data related to the epidemic on the platform […]

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IBM Fellow Chieko Asakawa awarded Medal of Honor

Awarded in Japan’s Emperor’s name, the Medal of Honor with Purple Ribbon is given to outstanding contributors in valuable invention, creation, and modernization in academic and artistic fields. IBM Fellow Chieko Asakawa The government of Japan awarded the 2013 Medal of Honor with Purple Ribbon to IBM Fellow Chieko Asakawa for her outstanding contributions to […]

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Seeing the potential in digitized Braille

IBM Fellow Chieko Asakawa recalls the painstaking process of translating her textbooks to Braille when she was in college. No Braille textbooks were available, so family members read while Chieko translated using a Braille typewriter. Translating an English textbook required her family members to spell out each word – which could take 20 to 30 […]

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Japan Braille Library digitizing books for the blind

The Japan Braille Library is creating digital versions of international standards-based Braille books, and audio books to improve accessibility for the visually impaired who may not have access to printed materials. Each year, more than 9,000 accessible books are added to the Sapie Library collection, a nationwide online library managed by the Japan Braille Library […]

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Seeing and feeling shapes described by a stream of sound

Researchers at IBM’s lab in Tokyo have developed a new method to convert visual shapes on the web into a real-time stream of sound to help visually impaired better understand the shape of an object shown on a web site. Still an early prototype, the technology converts the shape of an object, such as an […]

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Building an inclusive society on the web

In an effort to improve Web accessibility of public services for every Japanese citizen, including the elderly and disabled, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC) developed Operational Models for Government Agencies and Municipalities: a manual that provides guidance and procedures that ensure accessibility for such tasks as municipality orders for outsourcing Web site […]

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