We continue to work on our projects, updating and trying new ideas! Here is the latest news about Synote mobile, LexDis and ATbar.
Synote mobile has built on the work on Synote Researcher and allows users to not only take YouTube video with transcriptions and captions but to also annotate with the use of tags, colour and work on a mobile phone or tablet. The website has still to offer good search features but if you browse for recordings you will see the changes compared to the original version of Synote.
Lexdis is now running as a WordPress site with students and colleagues adding strategies directly from a link on the website. We really would like more strategies and are excited about the number that are coming related to mobile technologies.
Magnus has ensured that ATbar automatically updates so users no longer have to check for updates, the website has several additions including a wiki for guides and other ATbar related information, a forum for questions and a services section which includes a way of supporting the spell checking feature to improve results.
Nawar has worked on the desktop toolbar for Arabic users and this is now available for beta testing. It has four functions: an onscreen keyboard, a screen reader, a magnifier and colour overlays. Please become a beta tester and download the desktop toolbar from Github. This toolbar is very much ‘work in progress’! If you want to join the team in testing and wish to know more about this work please visit our project blog.
Both Mike and E.A are heading off to the States this week to talk about the Synote, LexDis, and Web2Access.
As the press release says, Mike is “going to present the latest developments in his award-winning web-based Synote at a symposium at the IBM TJ Watson Research Centre, New York on Monday 9 November.
It will be the first time Synote will be shown with its additional ability to “synchronise live notes taken using Twitter with synchronised lecture recordings and transcripts created using IBM’s speech recognition software.”
E.A. is off to the 12th Annual Accessing Higher Ground – Accessible Media, Web and Technology Conference in Colorado on Thursday 12 November to show how Seb Skuse, Russell Newman and Chris Phethean have developed a suite of accessibility tools that can help to make access to the web easier. This work has come about as a result of the findings of the JISC funded LexDis project which, as someone said “refuses to die!” Students are still coming forward with new strategies for the way they cope with their “Technology Enhanced Learning” (to include e-learning and mobile learning) environments and E.A. is keen to continue with this work so that the database can be kept up to date with the latest ideas.
The press release ends by saying: “In her presentation, E.A. will highlight the need to enhance the knowledge of a wider network of ‘informal experts’ and academic staff to enable them to introduce disabled students to the many web-based tools which are currently emerging. This would allow disabled students to further develop their skills and perhaps in time also become informal experts who would be willing to share the strategies they have developed with others as can be seen on the LexDis website.”