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News & Events

Here you will find the latest news as well as upcoming and previous events.

Returning to In-Person Training

Photo of the training group
Photo of the training group in Dehradun, IndiaAt DAISY we are regularly approached by institutions working for people with print disabilities to request training in the production of accessible books, document conversion, and accessible ebook creation. For the past two years, training has been delivered online, through dedicated online courses, self-study materials, and trainer-led sessions delivered over video calls. Last month we conducted our first onsite training since the onset of Covid conducted at Dehradun, India for the National Institute for Empowerment of Persons with Visual Disabilities, the apex institution established by the Government of India for the rehabilitation of people with visual impairments. This institution first adopted the DAISY format in 2010 and got in touch again because they are now interested in creating books in the EPUB format. The staff of the National Braille Library, National Large Print Books Library, and the National Talking Book Library of India participated in this training program delivered by Prashant Ranjan Verma, where they learned to create accessible Word documents and the steps to convert to EPUB, large print, DAISY format, and braille. Refresher sessions were separately conducted for the National Talking Book Library team which is using Dolphin Publisher and Obi to create high-quality human narrated audio books. This training was part of this institution’s work to adopt a “single source – multiple formats” workflow, where a master copy of the book will be created in Microsoft Word format and converted to different formats as and when requested by members with print disabilities.
If your organization is interested in training on the latest techniques for accessible format and inclusive publishing practices please contact us to discuss how we can assist you with your requirements. Read More

Liblouis Braille Translation Table Feedback

Embossed braille page being read

Embossed braille page being read Liblouis is a free and open-source braille translation system that powers screen readers such as NVDA, JAWS to work with refreshable braille display in various languages, as well as a variety of conversion tools including the DAISY Pipeline. To facilitate accurate translation Liblouis has dedicated braille tables for each language that it supports.

If a language is supported by Liblouis, then it is possible to read create a braille version of a document in that language for use on a refreshable braille display such as an Orbit Reader, or embossed on braille paper.

Liblouis currently supports 79 languages, and many of those languages have braille tables for grade 1 and grade 2 (uncontracted and contracted) braille. You can find the list below.

Considering the importance of Liblouis in supporting braille usage on refreshable braille displays and for the production of braille books, the DAISY Consortium is seeking assistance in compiling a list of languages that are not yet supported in Liblouis and in which accessible books are currently published. We are also seeking feedback on languages that are currently supported, but in which the braille translation may not be correct.

Once we have identified these gaps we will be able to plan for filling them by adding braille tables of identified languages. If you are aware of any language in which accessible books are published and braille translation tables are not available or currently adequate please let us know:

Visit the Liblouis feedback form

List of languages for which braille translation tables are available in Liblouis:

  1. Afrikaans
  2. Arabic
  3. Armenian
  4. Assamese
  5. Bashkir
  6. Belarusian
  7. Bengali
  8. Bulgarian
  9. Burmese
  10. Catalan
  11. Chinese Mandarin
  12. Chinese Cantonese
  13. Coptic
  14. Croatian
  15. Czech
  16. Danish
  17. Dutch
  18. English
  19. Esperanto
  20. Estonian
  21. Ethiopic
  22. Finish
  23. French
  24. Gaelic
  25. German
  26. Greek
  27. Gujarati
  28. Hebrew
  29. Hindi
  30. Hungarian
  31. Icelandic
  32. Irish
  33. Israeli
  34. Italian
  35. Kannada
  36. Kashmiri
  37. Kazak
  38. Khmer
  39. Korean
  40. Kurdish
  41. Latvian
  42. Lithuanian
  43. Malay
  44. Malayalam
  45. Manipuri
  46. Marathi
  47. Mongolian
  48. Nepali
  49. Norwegian
  50. Oriya
  51. Persian
  52. Polish
  53. Portuguese
  54. Punjabi
  55. Romanian
  56. Russian
  57. Sanskrit
  58. Sepedi
  59. Serbian
  60. Sesotho
  61. Setswana
  62. Slovak
  63. Slovenian
  64. Spanish
  65. Swedish
  66. Tamil
  67. Tatar
  68. Telugu
  69. Tshivenda
  70. Turkish
  71. Ukrainian
  72. Unified English Braille
  73. Urdu
  74. Uzbek
  75. Vietnamese
  76. Welsh
  77. Xhosa
  78. Yakut
  79. Zulu
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What Does EPUB 3.3 Mean For Accessibility?

EPUB logo

EPUB logoEPUB 3 has widely been adopted by the commercial publishing community as the chosen format for digital books, and is being increasingly utilized for accessible format delivery by educators and specialist libraries. The new version of the standard, EPUB 3.3, the related EPUB 1.1 accessibility specification and the updated version of EPUBCheck is imminent and we asked EPUB 3.3 editor and DAISY developer Matt Garrish; ‘What does this mean for accessible publishing?’

What is EPUB ?

The EPUB specification is a distribution and interchange format standard for digital publications and documents. There are huge opportunities for accessibility within the EPUB standard and indeed for born accessible publications. At DAISY we have some overview information to help you familiarize yourself with the standard itself and its component parts. In addition, the W3C maintain an overview document that provides a general introduction to the state of the format as of this revision.

Can We Expect Major Changes For Accessibility?

Neither the EPUB 3.3 nor the Accessibility 1.1 revisions represent major changes. Most of our efforts are focused on taking the work we’ve already done and moving the documents through the W3C process to make formal recommended specifications of them (i.e., to be fully recognized by W3C membership). EPUB 3.2 was published by the W3C publishing community group, so those documents did not have any formal standing (they didn’t have to go through W3C membership votes, they didn’t have to show independent implementations, etc.). So, EPUB 3.3 will formalize the standard.

So, EPUB 3.3 Doesn’t Look That Much Different?

Actually, EPUB 3.3 does not look at all like EPUB 3.2 from a document structure perspective. EPUB 3.2 was made up of five specifications (not including Accessibility 1.1 which is a separate specification):

  • EPUB 3.2
  • EPUB Packages 3.2
  • EPUB Content Documents 3.2
  • EPUB Open Container Format (OCF) 3.2
  • EPUB Media Overlays 3.2

The authoring requirements from these specifications have now been merged into a single specification called EPUB 3.3, which is available in draft form right now at: https://www.w3.org/TR/epub-33/

EPUB 3.3 Splits Authoring From Reading Systems

The reading system requirements have now been split out into a new specification called, appropriately enough, EPUB Reading Systems 3.3 which is also a working draft: https://www.w3.org/TR/epub-rs-33/

Separating authoring and reading systems also has the side benefit of having fewer documents to take through the W3C process and better isolation when it comes to showing how the specifications can be implemented.

What Stage of the Process Have You Reached?

We’re just getting ready to wrap up the working draft stage and move to a candidate recommendation (the links above won’t change when we do). What this means is that our focus will change from revising the technical details of the specifications to showing that the specifications can be implemented by authors and reading systems. There is a testing task force working on creating tests for all the normative requirements and then during the candidate recommendation stage we’ll be looking for implementations to prove the tests.

How Does This Affect the EPUB Accessibility 1.1 Specification?

The Accessibility 1.1 revision is very similar to EPUB 3.3 in that there are not a lot of major changes from 1.0. The new version incorporates the text improvements that were made to EPUB 1.0 as part of making it an ISO standard (ISO/IEC 23761:2021), but those changes were editorial in nature (i.e., the IDPF and ISO specifications read differently, but have the same base requirements).

The most significant change that people will need to be aware of is that we’re now allowing conformance to adapt to the latest versions of WCAG 2 as they become recommendations (the Accessibility 1.0 specification only allowed conformance to WCAG 2.0). You still have to minimally meet WCAG 2.0 Level A to meet the base requirements of our specification, but publishers are now encouraged to conform to the latest recommended version of WCAG 2 (which is 2.1 right now, but 2.2 is coming). Level AA conformance is also recommended. This means that there is now a new conformance identifier that publishers will have to use in the metadata that adapts to what WCAG version and level you have met. The details are explained here: https://www.w3.org/TR/epub-a11y-11/#sec-conf-reporting-pub.

Other minor tweaks include the separation of the page navigation and media overlay objectives into separate sections to make them easier to read, but they aren’t different from the 1.0 specification.

Will EPUBCheck be Updated to Support EPUB 3.3?

The next version of EPUBCheck, the free command-line EPUB checking tool, will provide complete support for checking conformance to the EPUB 3.3 standard. The Public Beta version is due out shortly.

Read More

Upcoming Events

DAISY AGM 2022

Date: May 24, 2022

Zoom webinar

Digital Publishing Summit 2022

Date: June 3, 2022

Madrid, Spain

IFLA World Library and Information Congress 2022

July 26, 2022 - July 29, 2022

Dublin, Ireland

M-Enabling Summit 2022

October 24, 2022 - October 26, 2022

Washington, DC, USA

Accessing Higher Ground 2022

November 14, 2022 - November 18, 2022

Denver, Colorado, USA

CSUN Assistive Technology Conference 2023

March 13, 2023 - March 17, 2023

Anaheim, California, USA