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eBraille: a web‐based translation program for Japanese text to braille

Aki Sugano (Based at the Division of Applied Genome Science and Bioinformatics, Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine, Kobe, Japan)
Mika Ohta (based at the Division of Applied Genome Science and Bioinformatics, Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine, Kobe, Japan)
Tsuyoshi Oda (Based at the Division of Applied Genome Science and Bioinformatics, Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine, Kobe, Japan and also affiliated with the National Kobe Rehabilitation Center for the Visually Disabled, Kobe, Japan)
Kenji Miura (Based at Laboratory for Applied Genome Science and Bioinformatics, Clinical Genome Informatics Center, Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine, Kobe, Japan)
Shuji Goto (Based at the Department of Informatics, Goto College of Medical Arts and Sciences, Tokyo, Japan)
Masako Matsuura (Based at the Nursing Department, Kobe University Hospital, Kobe, Japan)
Eiichi Maeda (Based at the Laboratory for Applied Genome Science and Bioinformatics, Clinical Genome Informatics Center, Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine, Kobe, Japan)
Toshiko Ohshima (Based at the Nursing Department, Kobe University Hospital, Kobe, Japan)
Yuji Matsumoto (Based at the Computational Liguistics Laboratory, Graduate School of Information Science, Nara University of Science and Technology, Ikoma, Japan)
Yutaka Takaoka (Based at the Division of Applied Genome Science adn Bioinformatics, Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine, Kobe, Japan)

Internet Research

ISSN: 1066-2243

Article publication date: 19 October 2010

Abstract

Purpose

The authors develop a program, named eBraille, to translate Japanese text into braille and thereby generate braille documents easily. Public access to this program is provided to anyone via the Internet. The paper aims to evaluate the translation accuracy of the eBraille program.

Design/methodology/approach

eBraille is a CGI program that is accessible via a web browser. The core of the program is a braille translating engine called the Kobe University Intelligent Braille Engine for ChaSen (KUIC). It is based on Japanese Braille Transcription Rules (Japanese Braille Committee, 2001). To evaluate the translation accuracy of eBraille, a corpus was utilized that was created from ordinary text and braille newspaper articles.

Findings

The paper finds that eBraille translation accuracy is equivalent to or better than that of other stand‐alone braille translation programs. This result suggests that the program achieved the goal of being applicable for practical use. In addition, the program is utilized to make Kobe University Hospital brochures in braille for outpatients and inpatients. The brochures are available in the hospital and are favorably accepted by the blind and the visually impaired. This result suggests that the translation program can facilitate accessibility to information for patients.

Originality/value

The braille translation program is based on a client‐server system and is architecture‐independent. Moreover, it is a free system for creating braille text files for anyone who has access to a web browser.

Keywords

Citation

Sugano, A., Ohta, M., Oda, T., Miura, K., Goto, S., Matsuura, M., Maeda, E., Ohshima, T., Matsumoto, Y. and Takaoka, Y. (2010), "eBraille: a web‐based translation program for Japanese text to braille", Internet Research, Vol. 20 No. 5, pp. 582-592. https://doi.org/10.1108/10662241011084121

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited