April 1999

Contact: Fred Thompson

562-626-8200, ext. 124

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

TOUCHVISION KIOSKS SPEAK FOR THE VISUALLY IMPAIRED

TouchVision, Seal Beach, California, has recently set a new standard for ADA compliance for interactive kiosk systems. The Company is responsible for providing the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) with three prototype community information kiosks. The challenge was to find a way to make the kiosk multimedia content accessible to both the visually impaired and the sighted user. Through continual consultation with VTA and community groups, TouchVision created a solution believed to be the first of its kind in the world.

Using cutting-edge text-to-speech technology, TouchVision developed a complete audio tour of the kiosk in which the multimedia content shown on the screen is actually read by the kiosk. The user makes a selection based on this narrative, and the audio browsing process continues on each multimedia "page."

The content accessed from the touch screen kiosk is the same for all users, regardless of whether they choose the speech-enhanced tour or the complete multimedia experience. The choices available and subsequent pages of content are identical. The kiosk includes Silicon Valley Visitor Information, VTA Route Maps and links to hundreds of additional ADA compliant websites.

"How can a person who cannot see or feel buttons on a screen use touch screen inputs?" This was the challenge VTA's Tammy Dhanota brought to TouchVision's multimedia think-tank. "[The kiosk] had to have the same path with identical content for all" was among several of the seemingly impossible requirements brought to TouchVision's Michael Jarvis. "With this solution, all VTA riders will now have complete access to the same information on the kiosk" says Jarvis.

Fred Thompson, Marketing Director of TouchVision states, "We have always prided ourselves in offering our customers the very best solutions utilizing the latest in kiosk technology. Most often, that has required our staff of professionals to develop it themselves. We continually test and review the technology being used in other industries to incorporate recent developments into our own kiosk operating software. In fact, the next advancement we have developed is speech recognition by the kiosk." TouchVision will make this available for other applications in addition to transportation, including those in health care, tourism, and retail.

 

 

TouchVision produces end-to-end solutions for interactive systems using kiosks and web sites. TouchVision provides solutions for e-commerce, retail, tourism, health care, transportation, and other markets. Company mission is to develop winning interactive applications, and to operate interactive networks that always work. The organization features experienced software programmers, multimedia developers, project managers, technicians, and other professionals. TouchVision capabilities include application development, cabinets, hardware, system integration, installation, operations, and maintenance. For more information, visit the TouchVision website at www.touchvision.com, or contact Fred Thompson, Marketing Director, at 562-626-8200 ext. 124 or fthompson@touchvision.com. TouchVisionís name was changed from Ecotek in December of 1998.

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