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How to Produce Accessible Educational Resources
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  1. How to Produce Accessible Educational Resources Dr. Cristian Bernareggi – cristian.bernareggi@unimi.it Dott.ssa Valeria Brigatti – info@valeriabrigatti.com

  2. Summary • Scenarios • Problems in accessing scientific documents • Accessible output formats and how to produce documents in these formats • What do V.I. students read in accessible scientific resources • Editing using speech input Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  3. Scenarios • Lessons (slide presentations) • Study Material (slides, interactive web pages, digital documents, etc.) • Textbooks Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  4. Problems in Accessing Scientific Documents (1) • Scientific contents (formulae, equations, expressions, etc.) are usually inserted in digital documents as images, very often with no meaningful (for blind readers) alternative description. • i.e., if the lesson is about Lorenz equations, a meaningful alternative text is the one that reports the equations as they would be spoken, not “Lorenz equations” Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  5. Problems in Accessing Scientific Documents (2) • For blind students: • No chance to explore the image of a formula • Without the appropriate plug-in, the markup is not interpreted by mainstream screen readers • For partially sighted students: • Low resolution images • Images are often too small and not resizable • Not sufficient or not customizable contrast Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  6. What Does Make a Formula Accessible by Visually Impaired People? • Adding an alternative description on every image of a formula • Embedding a markup for mathematics that can be interpreted to generate math and speech output (MathML) Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  7. Accessible Output Formats • LaTeX/TeX • Accessible and Structured PDFs • XHTML + MathML • DAISY + MathML Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  8. How to Create Accessible LaTeX Documents • LaTeX documents should be written as human readable (e.g., using TeXnicCenter) • Tools that automatically generate LaTeX do not usually create human readable LaTeX Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  9. Accessible PDF Files A PDF is accessible if • It is tagged • It has an appropriate reading order • All formulae have an alternative text • All images have an alternative description • § “Creating Accessible Adobe PDF Files – A guide for document authors” (http://www.adobe.com/enterprise/accessibility/pdfs/acro6_pg_ue.pdf) Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  10. How to Create Accessible PDFs (1) You can create a structured and accessible PDF using Adobe Acrobat Standard or Acrobat Professional, starting from different sources: • MS Word / MS PowerPoint / MS Excel • OpenOffice.org Writer / OpenOffice.org Impress • Etc. You must use styles in your document! Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  11. How to Create Accessible PDFs (2) • Note: you can also add tags to your PDF documents in Acrobat Professional on an existing PDF document, but it is not the best neither the most efficient way to do it. Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  12. How to Create Accessible PDFs with Scientific Content There are different options: • Using MS Word + Design Science MathType + Adobe PDF Maker • Using OO Writer + OO Math + Export to PDF Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  13. How to Create Accessible PDFs from MS Word (1) • You should have MS Word , Design Science MathType, and at least Adobe Acrobat Standard installed on your computer Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  14. How to Create Accessible PDFs from MS Word (2) • Edit the MS Word document using “Styles” From: M.K. Das, “Discrete Mathematical Structures – For computer scientists and engineers”, Alpha Science Ed. Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  15. How to Create Accessible PDFs from MS Word (3) • When you have to insert a formula, go to Design Science MathType menu and choose “Insert Display Equation”. • Because of a known bug, the layout is not preserved by Adobe PDF Maker when you insert inline equations. Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  16. How to Create Accessible PDFs from MS Word (4) • Edit your expression in MathType. Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  17. How to Create Accessible PDFs from MS Word (5) • For the alternative text: • In MathType, go to the Preferences menu and click on Translators • Select the Translation to other language (text) option • From the dropdown Translator menu, select one of the LaTeX/TeX options • Confirm your choice by pressing the OK button • Once you have type your expression, select it (ctrl+A) and copy it to the clipboard (ctrl+c) Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  18. How to Create Accessible PDFs from MS Word (6) • Paste the alternative text on the Web tab of the Format Object menu of the formula Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  19. How to Create Accessible PDFs from MS Word (7) • Save the document and then Convert to Adobe PDF Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  20. How to Create Accessible PDFs from MS Word (8) • The final PDF: Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  21. How to Create Accessible PDFs from OpenOffice.org Writer (1) • You need OpenOffice.org Writer and OpenOffice.org Math Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  22. How to Create Accessible PDFs from OpenOffice.org Writer (2) • Edit your document in OpenOffice.org Writer using styles, so that your document will be structured. Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  23. How to Create Accessible PDFs from OpenOffice.org Writer (3) • Insert your formulae using OO Math, which uses its own language to edit equations. Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  24. How to Create Accessible PDFs from OpenOffice.org Writer (4) • Edit the alternative text of the formula: • Copy/paste the markup of OO Math • Edit the LaTeX alternative text of the formula with a LaTeX editor or by hand if you know LaTeX Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  25. How to Create Accessible PDFs from OpenOffice.org Writer (5) • Save your document and directly export your document to PDF, using the OpenOffice.org command (No need to have Adobe Acrobat installed). Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  26. View of an accessible scientific PDF Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  27. What does a blind student read on Braille line in an accessible scientific PDF Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  28. What does a partially sighted person read in scientific PDFs Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  29. How to Create XHTML + MathML documents Using: • MS Word, Design Science MathType, and Design Science MathPage • An editor (Notepad++, Eclipse, etc.), and inserting the MathML markup created either with Design Science MathType or with another MathML markup editor Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  30. How to Create XHTML+MathML documents with Word+MathType (1) Using MS Word + Design Science MathType & MathPage Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  31. How to Create XHTML+MathML documents with Word+MathType (2) • Edit your document with MS Word, applying styles Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  32. How to Create XHTML+MathML documents with Word+MathType (3) • Insert math content with MathType Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  33. How to Create XHTML+MathML documents with Word+MathType (4) • Save your document and use the command “Export to MathPage” Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  34. How to Create XHTML+MathML documents for web pages (1) • You can paste the MathML markup inside your document, copying it either from MathType (having previously set the Translation option to MathML – with m namespace to display math in IE) Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  35. What does a blind person read in XHTML+MathML • MS Internet Explorer + Design Science MathPlayer • This is the sentence spoken by the screen reader for the matrix example: “Cap M equals matrix with 3 rows and 3 columns. Row 1: column 1: 1, column 2: 0, column 3: 0; row 2: column 1: 0, column 2: 1, column 3: 0; row 3: column 1: 0, column 2: 0, column 3: 1. End matrix” Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  36. Scenario 1: Lessons • During lessons, teachers usually show slides or write on a blackboard • Slides can be handwritten and projected, or in a digital format (MS PowerPoint, OpenOffice.org Impress, Google Docs, etc.) • Digital presentations are often uploaded on the university/school website for students fruition Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  37. How to Create Digital Accessible Presentations with Math Contents (1) • MS PowerPoint + Design Science MathType, with alternate text on formulae and images • OpenOffice.org Impress + OO Math, optionally exported to PDF • HTML Slidy (quite intricate to use) Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  38. How to Create Digital Accessible Presentations with Math Contents (2) • The step-by-step procedures you have to follow to create accessible presentations with mathematical contents are the same that you used to create accessible scientific PDF documents, mutatis mutandis (MS Word -> MS PowerPoint; OO Writer -> OO Impress) Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  39. Scenario 2: Study Material • Exercise sheets • Documentation produced by teachers • Web pages Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  40. How to Create Accessible Study Material with Scientific Content (1) • Styled MS Word + Design Science MathType, exported to a structured PDF with alternate descriptions on formulae and images • Structured Open Office documents exported to PDFs with alternate descriptions on formulae and images Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  41. How to Create Accessible Study Material with Scientific Content (2) • Styled MS Word + Design Science MathType, exported to XHTML+MathML web pages with Design Science MathPage • Website pages in XHTML + MathML, with alternative descriptions on images Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  42. Scenario 3: Textbooks DAISY + MathML books • The first player supporting MathML is the gh Player 2.2 • Production tools are still under development for MathML-in-DAISY Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  43. Editing Using Speech Input (1) • Editing mathematics for digital documents using MathType is easy, because it is a WYSIWYG editor • Anyway, you have to search for the symbols in the palettes, which can be a time-consuming operation if you are not familiar with the various palettes or with the shortcut keys. Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  44. Editing Using Speech Input (2) • So, we thought that a speech interface for editing scientific documents could be useful, especially if math is spoken in natural language • We made a prototype of a speech input interface for MS Word and Design Science MathType, using Nuance Dragon NaturallySpeaking for the Italian language Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  45. Editing Using Speech Input (3) • The commands to insert mathematics are like the natural language ones: multiple ways of speaking a symbol, depending on the context, are mapped into one symbol. Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  46. Editing Using Speech Input (4) • From our preliminary studies, we noticed an improvement in the editing time, which became quicker not only for non-experienced users – as we supposed -, but also for experienced users of MathType. • Further studies and developments will be carried out in this direction. Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  47. References • @Science Network: http://www.ascience.eu • Design Science Inc.: http://www.dessci.com • “Creating Accessible Adobe PDF Files – A guide for document authors”: http://www.adobe.com/enterprise/accessibility/pdfs/acro6_pg_ue.pdf • OpenOffice.org: http://www.openoffice.org • CSUN ’08 Paper: “Writing Mathematics by Speech: a Case Study for the Italian Language” http://letsgoexpo.com/expo/index.cfm?EID=80000093&p=3&page=scheduledetail&LCID=1638&ECTID=0 Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  48. Questions? • Cristian Bernareggi, cristian.bernareggi@unimi.it • Valeria Brigatti, info@valeriabrigatti.com Making Science Accessible @Science Network Int. Conference

  49. Thank you! Dr. Cristian Bernareggi Dott.ssa Valeria Brigatti @Science Network Biblioteca di Informatica Università degli Studi di Milano