Braille Resources

Last updated: May 22, 2016

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  • About Braille from the National Braille Press (NBP). If your child or student is blind, you may be wondering whether or not they need to learn braille. Read on to find out more about how braille works, why it's important, and where to find braille resources.
  • The Braille Bug The American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) created the Braille Bug web site to teach sighted children about braille, and to encourage literacy among all children.
  • Braille Displays:
    • Blind and Low Vision Products AbleData's database of products for people with visual disabilities. Major Categories: Computers, Educational Aids, Health Care, Information Storage, Kitchen Aids, Labeling, Magnification, Office Equipment, Orientation and Mobility, Reading, Recreation, Sensors, Telephones, Time, Tools, Travel, Typing, Writing (Braille).
  • Duxbury Systems leads the world in software for braille. The Duxbury Braille Translator (DBT) and MegaDots, are used by virtually all of the world's leading braille publishers. No one supports more languages than Duxbury Systems — DBT supports grade 1 and grade 2 translation for over 130 languages. The software can produce contracted and uncontracted braille, mathematics, and technical braille.
  • Enabling Technologies manufacturing Braille Embossers for over 43 years.
  • Humanware – Blindness products makers of the BrailleNote and BrailleNote PK, screen readers, embossers, reading machines talking GPS, and other items for blind, low vision, deaf/blind communication solutions.
  • Unified English Braille (UEB) is an English language Braille code standard, developed to permit representing the wide variety of literary and technical material in use in the English-speaking world today, in uniform fashion. From Wikipedia.
  • U.S. National Library Service (NLS) Factsheets: Web-Braille

Web-Braille

Last updated: May 18, 2016

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Web-Braille is a data file format that can be read on a Braille display or transmitted to a Braille embosser. Web-Braille files have the extension .brf. The Braille codes in Braille-ready files allow blind people to read electronic documents from computer disks or from the Internet.

Web-Braille files contain 25 lines per page. Each line holds up to 39 characters. A single printed page translates into several Braille pages; the exact ratio depends on the nature of the document. Mathematical expressions and symbols, as well as graphics, can be converted into words before being translated into Braille-ready files. Complex mathematical documents have the highest Braille-to-text page conversion ratios.

Several thousand Web-Braille books are available for downloading from the National Library Service (NLS) in the U.S. About 40 new books are published online in this format every month. The NLS Web-Braille material is available only to citizens or residents of the United States, or to qualified institutions.

Related links:

Web-Braille definition

Related terms: Braille display
Braille Display

There are several Braille computer codes in the U.S. See Computer Braille Code from the Braille Authority of North America.

A universal Braille computer code for technical documents was introduced in 1991: "A Universal Computer Braille Code For Literary And Scientific Texts", by Durre, Karl P.; Tuttle, Dean W. and Durre, Ingeborg.

U.S. National Library Service (NLS) Factsheets: Web-Braille.