SBIR/STTR Phase I: Software Tools for Authoring American Sign Language
National Science Foundation
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Small Business Information
3452 Lake Lynda Drive, Suite 260, Orlando, FL, 32807
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractThis Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project will develop software tools allowing educators, interpreters, and linguists skilled in American Sign Language (ASL), but not skilled in computer 3-D animation, to create fully grammatical synthesized ASL to provide access for Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals to Internet web pages and CD-ROM based interactive media; and to create interactive courses for learning ASL. While this project will build upon Vcom3D's commercial SigningAvatar(TM) product, a signficant advance is proposed. The current SigningAvatar(TM)technology allows users to generate unique sentences in Signed English thus providing partial access to digital media. However, the absence of many elements of ASL grammar limits the use of SigningAvatar(TM) by the larger segment of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing population who require grammatical ASL for comprehension and for ASL courses. This project addresses the numerous requests to provide fully grammatical ASL that Vcom3D has had from the Deaf community. The resulting ASL products will significantly reduce federal costs of public school education for Deaf children and will move toward improving universal access and equity of service goals, as mandated by the Americans with Disabilities Act; Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act; and Section 255 of the Telecommunications Act.
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