Touch Graphics, Inc. carried out research on a system for producing and playing back Illustrated Digital Talking Books, based on the DAISY/NISO specification. As a test case, we converted Touch the Sun, a NASA Braille book by Noreen Grice, to this new format. Readers were able to navigate the text in audio format, and then explore tactile graphic versions of photographs of the Sun taken by the SOHO space telescope. Readers selected among chapter, paragraph, sentence, word and letter navigation levels, and were able to place and go to bookmarks, consult an index, and perform text searches of the entire book.
This work wascarried out in collaboration with the Benetech Initiative, creators of Bookshare.org, and the DAISY Consortium. Preliminary findings were shared at the CSUN conference in Los Angeles in March, 2006. The work has been funded by a Phase 1 SBIR grant from the National Institute of Disability and Rehabilitation Research, United States Department of Education.