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WWAAC WWAAC WWA AC WorldWide Augmentative & Alternative Communication www.ace-centre.org.uk www.hubblesoft.com www.conceptcoding.org.

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Presentation on theme: "WWAAC WWAAC WWA AC WorldWide Augmentative & Alternative Communication www.ace-centre.org.uk www.hubblesoft.com www.conceptcoding.org."— Presentation transcript:

1 WWAAC WWAAC WWA AC WorldWide Augmentative & Alternative Communication

2 WWAAC Consortium –Handicom (The Netherlands) –DART Regional Childrens Habilitation, Sahlgrenska University Hospital (Sweden) –Department of Speech, Music and Hearing, Kungl Tekniska Hogskölan (Sweden) –The ACE Centre Advisory Trust (UK) –Loughborough University (UK) –Dundee University (UK) –Modemo (Finland) –MITC (Denmark) –Femtio Procent Data (Sweden)

3 WWAAC Aim: To make the electronic highway (World Wide Web and ) more accessible and usable for people with complex communication needs Primary Target Group: People who use graphic symbol-based Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) aged years But also: Non-symbol users and people who use symbols to support their literacy could also benefit from easier access to Internet services

4 Project Outcomes Web Development Tools: –Web guidelines –Concept Coding Framework (CCF) –Web authoring utilities Demonstration Software: –Adaptive browser (with layout editor) –Adaptive (with layout editor) –A linguistically based Writing Support Module for Symbol Users Software Evaluation Protocols: –User requirements –User evaluation guidelines

5 Focus of this Presentation The development of… –Open source concept coding framework –Internet applications –Writing support structures

6 Concept Coding WWAAC sought to develop a communication infrastructure and protocol to support symbol-based communication This is underpinned by Concept Coding But what is a Concept Code?

7 A beverage consisting of an infusion of ground coffee beans CC-COFFEE-1001CC-COFFEE-1001 coffee

8 The food served and eaten at one time CC-MEAL-2001CC-MEAL-2001 meal

9 Being of the achromatic colour of maximum darkness; having little or no hue owing to absorption of almost all incident light CC-BLACK-3001CC-BLACK-3001 black

10 Why Concept Codes rather than words?

11 The Concept Code Framework brings together thousands of concepts A database of unique codes It is web-based and open-sourced, so anyone can make use of it Concept Code Framework (CCF)

12 Example

13 CC-HOW-4056 CC-IS-5278 CC-YOUR-6305 CC-CAT-7750 Jane writes an to her friend using PCS symbols She writes it using supportive software from Company A Janes friend Mark receives the His computer transforms the codes into Rebus symbols Mark reads the using supportive software from Company B NO graphics are sent from Janes computer to Marks – only codes

14 CC-HOW-4056 CC-IS-5278 CC-YOUR-6305 CC-CAT-7750 Jane has sent Mark the same , but this time the code is realised as a photograph instead of the Rebus symbol for cat. This is because Marks facilitator has further personalised how some of the codes are transformed for Mark. Only on his computer is the unique concept code cc-cat-7750 transformed into a photograph of Felix (Marks cat). The implementation of this sort of personalisation will depend upon the nature of the software being used by Mark.

15 Internet Example

16 Content Page Summary This page describes how actors are chosen to be in EastEnders. The Deputy Head of Casting for the BBC, Julia Crampsie, answers many questions. For example, she talks about how they find actors and extras. They hold meetings to choose actors, which they call Casting Workshops. This page describes how actors are chosen to be in EastEnders. The Deputy Head of Casting for the BBC, Julia Crampsie, answers many questions. For example, she talks about how they find actors and extras. They hold meetings to choose actors, which they call Casting Workshops. Close window This illustrates one of the recommendations from WWAACs web guidelines– that website developers should be encouraged to provide asummary of their site and/or page content. For example, the web browser could show the summary in a pop-up window when the user selects the link

17 Page Summary BBC - EastEnders - Casting This page describes how actors are chosen to be in EastEnders. The Deputy Head of Casting for the BBC, Julia Crampsie, answers many questions. For example, she talks about how they find actors and extras. They hold meetings to choose actors, which they call Casting Workshops. Back If appropriate, both text and symbols could appear in the summary. Concept codes would enable a supportive browser to retrieve the appropriate symbol set for the user (in Rebus).

18 Page Summary BBC - EastEnders - Casting This page describes how actors are chosen to be in EastEnders. The Deputy Head of Casting for the BBC, Julia Crampsie, answers many questions. For example, she talks about how they find actors and extras. They hold meetings to choose actors, which they call Casting Workshops. Back The same in PCS

19 Whats Involved? The website developer will need to input the concept codes either on the web page itself or within a summary To do this the web developer will need a web authoring plug-in to their web design software – WWAAC has made a prototype of a Dreamweaver Extension, but others will be developed too… Suppliers who produce supportive web browsers will need to enable their browsers to recognise concept codes so that the codes can be realised as symbols within their software

20 How will Concept Coding be achieved in practice?

21 Each AAC company will need to build a bridge to the CCF so that their symbol database maps onto the framework Through the web-based CCF, their software will then be able to interact with software from other AAC companies A post-WWAAC project aims to support companies in doing this programming ( CCF A.N.Other Company Handicom A.N.Other Company

22 What Stage is the CCF at Now? The structure in which to store the concept codes has been developed The concept code database itself is growing A CCF interest group has been established A post-WWAAC consortium is seeking funding to continue the work and research The Nordic Symbered project is developing web page creation tools based on CCF (www.symbolnet.org)

23 WWAAC Internet Applications WWAAC has developed an adapted Web browser It is the first browser that makes the WWAAC concept codes visible – others should soon follow! It is tailored to the needs of people who use AAC Developed out of user requirements study and evaluated by end users

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25 Key Features Graphical favourites page Integrated speech synthesiser that can be customised Summary function Concept coding aware Layout editor Selection sets for inputting data into online fields Alternative access

26 Supportive Writing Goal: to support symbol users in making morphologically and syntactically correct sentences and phrases

27 Why is this needed? Symbol based messages are often linguistically different from spoken messages In face-to-face communication the communication partner can co-construct / pose clarifying questions The Internet cannot do this

28 Link with Concept Coding A morphologically and syntatically correct sentence / phrase can be automatically converted into other symbol systems or text Less ambiguity means less scope for mistakes This automatic conversion employs concept codes

29 The Software A corpus of written sentence types was collected and analysed The linguistic support provides grammatical model structures The semantic content is interchangeable The person using the software is guided through producing a sentence Underlying linguistic rules result in grammatically correct text

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36 Conclusion Goal: To enfranchise symbol users to become active players in the Internet community –Web Development Tools e.g. CCF, guidelines –Demonstration Software e.g. Browser, supportive writing –Software evaluation protocols


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