All over the world 2.2 billion folks have a type of imaginative and prescient incapacity in line with WHO. As disabilities have an effect on folks of all ages, it’s crucial that schooling is accessible to all and ensures equitable entry to youngsters and adults alike. Nonetheless, the truth is there are at the moment boundaries in schooling for many who are blind or have low imaginative and prescient, together with the dearth of accessible textbooks and classroom supplies. That is what is often known as a “guide famine” within the print disabled group.
Based initially as self-advocacy group for people who find themselves blind or low imaginative and prescient with an curiosity in STEM, I-Stem goals to reinforce entry to this in any other case inaccessible content material for folks with print disabilities. Via their previous expertise having skilled the challenges first-hand as blind co-founders, coupled with their expertise in engineering and AI, the crew makes use of AI to handle this barrier confronted by their group. Via assist from Microsoft’s AI for Accessibility grant program, I-Stem know-how makes use of Microsoft’s Azure which helps to acknowledge inaccessible textual content and extract it for additional processing. This then is processed with customized fashions that assist determine the structure and construction of the doc, thereby retaining the formatting and semantic illustration of the doc.
Nonetheless, even with their superior AI methods, there’s at all times potential for errors. To bridge this hole, I-Stem combines AI with human intelligence, together with a human remediator to right points, equivalent to a desk that was not recognized accurately. To make this course of seamless and environment friendly for remediation at scale, the crew has developed a remediation portal. This retrieves the AI-generated output, then gives an intuitive interface for remediators to repair any errors, each when it comes to the structure in addition to content material recognition. Presently being utilized by people, non-profits, schooling institutes and different enterprises, the objective of this portal is to assist speed up the creation and conversion of accessible content material.