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Free software for producing and reading accessible digital books

Intervenant(s) : Alex Bernier
Langue : Français Niveau : Débutant Type d'événement : Conférence
Date : Mercredi 7 juillet 2010 Horaire : 15h20 Durée : 40 minutes
Lieu : Bat. A22 - Amphi Darwin
Thèmes transversaux : Accessibilité

Digital books provide new ways to read to people who can not use "classical" media. It is for instance possible to access the book via a braille notebook, a computer with a screen reader and a speech synthesis, or a walkman.

These new usages have been made possible thanks to the creation of digital books that take into account accessibility issues as soon as their design, the target being : provide the best reading comfort to everybody.

The DAISY format is one of the attempts to reach that target. This format is nowadays a standard in the USA, and is largely used in the whole world, mainly to make documents accessible to people with sight impairment. DAISY is a rich format, which can for instance describe different types of books : audio, textual, audio and textual (with synchronization), etc.

Free software exist to produce contents using the DAISY formant. Hardware and software manufacturers distribute (sometimes freely [NDT as in freedom]) players supporting that format. Bookshops and digital libraries use it to provide various content, including content under copyright, which needs to be protected. Several technical solutions can be used to do that : encryption, watermarking, etc. The position that free software can still take in such context is then questionable.

Alex Bernier

Alex Barnier is a computer scientist and works at the national institute for health and care research (INSERM). He takes an active part in the Helene library project that is a digital library designed for visually impaired people.