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Alternative notations and personal information management

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I will rehearse two presentations which I will give at the Universal Access in HCI strand of the HCI International conference 2005. These are “Supporting the user’s design of alternative complex notations” and “Usable Personal Information Management techniques for people with low vision”.

One way to facilitate the accessibility of complex documents is to transcribe them into notations that are more suited to presentation on the user’s preferred output device(s), whether they are visual or not. Users sometimes prefer to design their own notations for this purpose, particularly in the educational subjects that have no widely-used standard for performing such transcription. We have developed a software framework that can assist users to design their own complex notations; it can also be used for assisting the development of converters for standard notations. The framework is domain-independent, but we demonstrate it by giving examples of its use in mathematics and diagrams, using both visual and non-visual interaction.

A method and tool is presented that assists with organising people’s personal notes and other information from inside a wordprocessor. It is usable on a small display and by people who are blind or who have low vision, as well as by others, and is also an example application of the 4DML transformation system. The basic principle is to allow the user to annotate parts of the text with labels and then group together any parts of the text that have the same label. The tool is experimentally evaluated, and refinements are reported on.

This talk is part of the Rainbow Interaction Seminars series.

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