Author Archives: Russell Newman

Summer Showcase '09

Friday saw the Learning Societies Lab’s annual Summer Showcase. In the Access Group, we decided to take this opportunity to show off all our projects. Chris Phethean, Seb Skuse and Russell Newman were speaking. E.A. was in Birmingham, so couldn’t make it.

Check out our presentation for all the details. Here is a PDF, 3MB:
Access Group 2009 Summer Showcase

Questions after each section highlighted some interesting possibilities for future development. Specifically:

  • Web2Access Validation Toolkit: Can part of the work of checking a site be performed by our server automatically, thus removing the need for a human to do it?
  • StudyBar Text-to-Speech: Could the server cache common sentences and/or websites? e.g. the BBC News site is likely to be a common request, so can we render it once then cache it?
  • Access Menu: Development of a package download service would allow users to add new programs to their pen drives and keep existing ones up to date.

Introducing The ECS Accessibility Projects Portal

We’ve been seeing more projects than usual in the ECS Accessibility Team, so we’ve decided it’s time to build a single point where anyone can get information on what we’re up to.

Intrepid domain explorers may have tried removing ‘/blog’ from this site, and stumbled upon our test version. We’re happy to say it’s all finished* now, so head over to and take a look! Comments are most welcome.

* ‘Finished’ is a relative term – expect graphical tweaks, compatibility fixes and other adjustments over the next few days…