Tuesday, March 30, 2004

Tech breakthrough to help blind 'read' Hindi - The Times of India

"LUCKNOW: His is an amazing story. At the tender age of eight years, glaucoma pitched a scared Dinesh Kaushal’s world into darkness.

Twenty years later, Dinesh has helped develop the world’s first ‘Hindi screen reader’, which will revolutionise the manner in which the visually challenged access the information superhighway.

A Java certified MSc in computer science (Yes, you read right), Dinesh has been a key component in the collaboration between National Association for the Blind (NAB), Delhi, and a Lucknow-based software development company, in building the ‘Hindi screen reader’. The screen reader picks up text (including off the Internet) on any computer screen being accessed by a visually challenged person and then reads it out. What is revolutionary is that for the first time electronic text in Hindi can be easily and effortlessly accessed by the visually challenged. And the first application the whiz-team from NAB and the software firm are thinking of is enabling the lakhs of visually challenged government staffers across India."