Blindness in the News – Jan. 8, 2016

“Blindness in the News” for the week ending Friday, Jan. 8, 2016.

A weekly compilation of news stories highlighting items of interest about people who are blind, visually impaired and disabled.

1. China to standardize sign languages, Braille
By: Rich Fury

This article discusses the Chinese government’s attempt to establish official standards for sign languages and braille to be used nationwide within the next five years.

Source: Xinhua News | Read Here

2. Facebook Plans to Improve Accessibility for Visually Impaired Users
By: Sarah Barr

As part of its effort to improve accessibility for seeing-impaired users, Facebook is looking into the use of artificial intelligence software that allows users with visual impairments the ability to query the site about what is in front of them. For example, not only will the site describe a photograph based on who is tagged in it, but upon prompting, will be able to narrate the action taking place as well.

Source: Good Magazine | Read Here

3. A craft with vision
By: Scott Pitoniak

This article looks at the efforts of a Beloit, WI resident to create Braille cards for people who are blind.

Source: Beloit Daily News | Read Here

4. This Amazing App Sees Objects For Blind People
By: Jacqueline Devine

This article talks about a free Android app called BlindTool. Developed by Joseph Paul Cohen, a Ph.D. Candidate at the University of Massachusetts Boston, BlindTool allows the user to simply aim his/her phone at an object, and the app will try to identify it within a second.

Source: Fast Company | Read Here

5. Savvy Senior: How to Find Discounts for People with Disabilities
By: Adam Saxon

This article offers pointers on how to find discounts for people with disabilities.

Source: Sun Advocate | Read Here

6. United Airlines fined $2.75 million over treatment of disabled fliers and tarmac delays
By: Hugo Martin

This article reports that the U.S. Department of Transportation has fined United Airlines $2.75 million over the carrier’s treatment of disabled passengers and for stranding passengers on delayed flights for more than three hours.

Source: Los Angeles Times | Read Here

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