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State of the science on the Cloud, accessibility, and the future


A state of the science conference on the Cloud, accessibility and the future was held at the University of Wisconsin–Madison on September 21 and 22, 2013. The desired outcomes of the conference were a better understanding of current and emerging issues around digital inclusion, a better understanding of where things are going, and what strategies for effectively addressing inclusion in the rapidly changing world we live in might be. Speaker presentations were pre-recorded and posted on YouTube®. During the conference, participants discussed the issues raised in these presentations and other topics. Topics discussed included the threefold emerging threat to ICT inclusion; the approaching ICT/web/Cloud inflection point—and how it changes existing rules; Cloud-based auto-personalization as an approach to inclusion (concept, status of implementation and plans); security and privacy, risks and options, related to personalization and Cloud-based solutions; non-technical issues and realities in national and global deployment and use of technical solutions; providing the tools necessary for industry to build accessibility into next and next–next generation everyday products; globally realistic/affordable approaches to scaling, sustainability and propagation; impact of digital inclusion on national prosperity, education and literacy; need for Cloud-based solutions in government services, health, voting, education, etc., and the demands these areas may impose on solutions. The summaries for the speaker presentations and recommendations regarding research, policy and education generated during the conference are presented in this paper.

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The contents of this report were developed with funding from the NIDRR, U.S. Department of Education, Grant Number H133E080022 (RERC on Universal Interface & Information Technology Access). However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.

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Correspondence to Gregg Vanderheiden.

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Chourasia, A., Nordstrom, D. & Vanderheiden, G. State of the science on the Cloud, accessibility, and the future. Univ Access Inf Soc 13, 483–495 (2014).

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  • Universal design
  • Auto-personalization
  • Cloud computing
  • Accessibility architecture