Innovation for Independence

The Digest: the curated Internet for the visually impaired

Publish date:
16/01/2015 - 4:41pm
Last updated:
16/01/2015 - 4:42pm
Author:
mark.holden@are...

Visually impaired people often have problems easily accessing the digital world through a screen. Our idea is to create a service that collates a wide range of feeds (news headlines, emails, tweets, FB timeline, instagrams, investments etc) summarised and together into one place – then delivered in a way appropriate to the visually impaired i.e. large-text or text-to-speed podcast. There are models out there that do this, but not for those with sight problems. Existing models include the likes of Yahoo Digest (summly) and flipboard. There are apps for those that are visually impaired, but only focus on doing one specific function i.e. TapTapSee - a camera app. Our service helps to provide a personalised best-of-the-Internet digest in a format that makes digital content much more accessible to those who do not find it easy to use conventional screens or solutions.

Insight & Impact

Visually impaired people still want to be connected to the digital world, but more and more we 'live' digitally through our screens. Access to digital information, either for leisure or professional purposes, has arguably become a precondition for effective participation in the public sphere, for building social and professional capital. There are existing browsers tailored for the visually impaired, however none that help to automate the aggregation of content across the web in a way that makes them quick and easy to access at regular intervals. This service could help widespread impact as it would be universally available via the open web and we believe will help those who with visual impairment to have better quality access to the digital information or content they want or need.

Skills needed for this project

  • the input of an appropriate end-user alpha/beta testing community – visually impaired users.
  • the input and support of media and technology organisations that we already have relationships with via the Havas Media Group e.g. publishers, social networks.