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UC entrants win Microsoft competition by making life easier for blind geeks

By jono1 - 29 June 2007 2

Ars Technica and APC Magazine have the details.

The winner of Microsoft Australia’s Imagine Cup competition at this year’s REMiX conference in Melbourne was Team APA (Audio Programming Assistant) from the University of Canberra. Students Phillip Haines, Ngoc Thuy Duong Khuu, Van Tieu Vinh and Ping Li developed a customised version of Microsoft’s Visual Studio 2005 program that allows blind users to write programs in the C# programming language using advanced speech recognition and speech synthesis technology.

They also demonstrated a customised version of Internet Explorer that allows blind users to surf the web using the same technologies.

While there was some debate on whether the team’s target market (blind programmers) was too narrow to have any kind of real impact, Team APA eventually emerged as a clear winner due to the demonstrated possibility to really help people – the technology could be adapted to other applications.

The second placed team, “Smart Education” also hailed from UC, and developed a web service that provides lecture note transcription, translation and collaboration for uni students using a mobile phone photo taken of the lecture whiteboard.

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2 Responses to
UC entrants win Microsoft competition by making life easier for blind geeks
Captain America 8:38 pm 30 Jun 07

Well these guys specific area of interest was sight-impaired people so I don’t imaging they’d be able to help you.
However there are accessibility guidelines for making websites usable by deaf or hard-of-hearing people. Check out this page for details.

Myrmecia 8:16 pm 30 Jun 07

Anyone have an e-mail address for any of these guys? I’m have a website built at the moment and I’d like to to be as accessible as it could be to the hearing impaired.

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