"Web-Braille: A New Distribution System for Braille Books" by Judy Dixon, consumer relations officer for the National Library Service (NLS) for the Blind and Physically Handicapped of the Library of Congress.
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.
- What is Web-Braille? definition.
- Web-Braille Frequently Asked Questions
- What is Braille display?
- 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.
Important Note: The Computer Braille Code is no longer an official code in the United States. (It is provided here for reference purposes only.)
It was replaced by Unified English Braille (UEB) in January 2016 by the Braille Authority of North America (BANA).
- BANA Press Releases about the Adoption of UEB
- Rules of Unified English Braille, Second Edition, 2013 by the International Council on English Braille (ICEB), Unified English Braille (UEB).
Updates to the Rules of Unified English Braille (2013) As at July 12, 2022, A number of updates to the Rules of Unified English Braille have been approved, taking effect immediately, and will be included in the next edition. Transcribers and designers of braille translation software and equipment are asked to implement these changes now.
- Guidelines for Technical Material (GTM)