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Old 06-30-2010, 10:08 AM   #1
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U.S. says eReaders don't meet ADA requirements

The U.S. Dept. of Justice and Dept. of Education have written a joint letter to colleges and universities warning them that ereading devices violate the Amercans with Disabilities Act. " Many e-readers have text-to-speech functions, but those don't apply to menus, which means that a blind person would still need help using the device," said a spokesperson.

http://www.katu.com/news/tech/97425114.html

This should put the firmware developers into overtime. They will need to have the device talking right from start-up. And it probably means braille showing up on device buttons soon, too.
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Old 06-30-2010, 10:16 AM   #2
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Also cited were iPods, which discriminate against the deaf...
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Old 06-30-2010, 10:16 AM   #3
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its a bit ridiculous i think. they already have alternatives for the blind students. just because the sighted students are using ebook readers shouldn't mean they have to provide a the same ebook reader to the blind student. the school can continue to use their current method for providing material to the blind student. If a new better method/device is found they can provide that.

whats more , imho, the suit should have been thrown out. the ASU program was a test to see how the Kindles could be used and what their limitations were and what should/could be improved.
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Old 06-30-2010, 10:20 AM   #4
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Great, just what we need...more gov't intrusion into the market.
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Old 06-30-2010, 10:28 AM   #5
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How on earth are they going to put braile on touchscreen keys like those of Nooks and iPads?
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Old 06-30-2010, 10:32 AM   #6
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Great, just what we need...more gov't intrusion into the market.
But I am now hard of hearing ( not deaf). And I have trouble finding phones that work for me. I do not need speech to text I need phones that are load enough. I do wear aids and they do help but will never be perfect. I do not believe that every ereader has to meet ADA but I believe that if a company makes ereaders and they sale over a certain number they should have to also make one for the blind. That is the rule that is finally in place for the cell phone companies.

Chuck
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Old 06-30-2010, 10:34 AM   #7
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Then there is the problem that publishers are fighting text-to-speech, aren't they, as an infringement on their books' audio rights?

However, an ebook reader for the blind sounds like a great product. Niche, of course, but it seems that the foundation is already there.
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Old 06-30-2010, 10:46 AM   #8
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How on earth are they going to put braile on touchscreen keys like those of Nooks and iPads?
iPads already meet the requirements. All its menus and such are read aloud if you use the settings for the disabled. I've read a couple of good reviews about iPad by blind people.
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Old 06-30-2010, 10:47 AM   #9
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So, do plain ol' paper books violate that act, too?
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Old 06-30-2010, 12:32 PM   #10
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So, do plain ol' paper books violate that act, too?
"Plain ol' paper books" are usually provided in braille, in cases where publishers know it is a condition of selling to a desired market (like if a school system demands it of a textbook).

This, to me, is a good example of the need for standardized reading systems. Standardized systems would mean that various manufacturers could build devices to read the same content, whether it be on small or large screens, in braille, read aloud, etc, and users could select whichever device was best suited for them. Although iPads and Kindles can provide some functionality for blind, deaf or physically disabled users, for example, other form factors could do those jobs better. The disabled should not be forced to use tools that aren't well-suited to the task.
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Old 06-30-2010, 12:43 PM   #11
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A blind person doesn't need eInk screen. I imagine this new device as a text-to-speech player, capable of reading a lot of formats and having big and easily distinguishable buttons for navigation. And a menu like when you call to recharge your prepaid mobile sim card. But there is no need of screen, just a headphone-plug. IMO.
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Old 06-30-2010, 12:46 PM   #12
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A chalk board probably doesn't meet ADA requirements either.
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Old 06-30-2010, 01:11 PM   #13
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The devices already exist like the Intel device and KNFB software apps featured in the first article and the devices featured in the 2nd used by the 12 year old Santiago Hernandez

http://goodereader.com/blog/electron...ist-the-blind/

http://www.pinnaclenews.com/news/con...w.asp?c=270994

a screen is good for a person not completly blind who needs to blow up content to extrem sizes.

more on the intel effort

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Old 06-30-2010, 04:18 PM   #14
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iPads already meet the requirements. All its menus and such are read aloud if you use the settings for the disabled. I've read a couple of good reviews about iPad by blind people.

Oh that's neat.
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Old 06-30-2010, 04:20 PM   #15
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A blind person doesn't need eInk screen.
That's a good point. They might be better served with the iPad anyway since it's already very blind-friendly.
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