New DAISY compliant recorders convert textbooks into speech for the blind and dyslexic.

The Digital Accessible Information System (DAISY) is an international multi-media, Web compatible, publishing platform that provides access to digital and print information in an audible format. DAISY technology is especially helpful for the visually impaired and those with dyslexia or other print disabilities because publications can incorporate human narration, video and animation. Special navigation features let readers move between different headings, pages, titles and words.

New from Olympus, DM-Hi series digital audio devices are DAISY compliant and can help make accessing information easy. For instance, both the DM-4 and DM-2 devices have a 2.2 inch full-color LCD screen to assist with navigation. Super high quality MP3, PCM, and WMA recording capabilities, up to 16GB of external microSD compatibility and voice guidance functions are also included. And a visual index function lets users link images to an audio file so finding a favorite track is simple.

In preparation for a June 2010 product release, officials from Olympus America presented the digital audio devices to over 250 delegates from Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa, Middle and Far East at the World Dyslexia Forum at UNESCO in Paris, France, on February 3, 2010.

Judi Stewart, CEO of the British Dyslexia Association and Hideaki Mori of Olympus Imaging America participated in the “Olympus Roundtable” discussion at the forum. Both were interviewed about the product and ways it might better assist people with dyslexia and dysnumeracy.

The DM-4 and DM-2 feature a sleek design and various user-friendly functions. Roundtable participants especially enjoyed the chance to add a picture tag to a voice file for recognition purposes, a feature supported by both devices.

The seminar was introduced by Her Royal Highness the Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxembourg and attended by the patron H.R.H. Princess Margeretha of Lichenstein.

THE SPECIFICS

Key features for the DM-4 include 8GB of internal memory or the equivalent of 2,000 hours of recorded sound. Users may play digitally recorded material in DAISY talking book format through a DAISY player certified by Daisy Consortium for the visually impaired, those with Dyslexia and other learning disabilities. A text to speech function enables the time, date and other keywords to be defined for easy identification.

The DM-2 has 4GB of internal memory or about 1,000 hours worth of recorded sound. Like the DM-4, it has a voice confirmation function for ease of use in navigating through folders and set-up options.

For more information about the DM-4 and DM-2 audio devices, click here.

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