English press release 2008-09-01

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Press release


6.7 million euro to a project coordinated by Lund University, Sweden

The EU will support a new project HaptiMap with a 6.7 million Euro grant. The project is aimed at making maps and location based services more accessible by using several senses like touch, hearing and vision.

 

“This is important; it is challenging and it is great fun! The fact that the EU supports the project at this point in time gives us the opportunity to really have an impact”, says Charlotte Magnusson, coordinator of HaptiMap.

 

The HAPTIMAP project will enable digital maps and mobile location based services to be accessible to a wide range of disabled users. The strategy is twofold, firstly to develop tools that make it easier for developers to add adaptable multimodal components (designed to improve accessibility) into their applications and, secondly, to raise the awareness of these issues via new guidelines and to suggest extensions to existing design practices so that accessibility issues are considered throughout the design process.

 

“In HaptiMap we have chosen to focus on geospatial information and maps since this type of information typically tends to be hard to access for persons with limited visual ability. We expect our results to be relevant also for mobile phones and computers in general”, says Charlotte Magnusson.

 

The HaptiMap project is coordinated by Lund University, Sweden. The other partners in the project are  Navteq, Siemens, BMT Group, CEA, ONCE, Finnish Geodetic Institute, University of Glasgow, OFFIS, Queen’s University, Fundacion Robotiker, Kreis Soest, and Lunds Kommun.

 

In the HaptiMap project we will make use of an Inclusive Design/Design for All approach where our goal is to increase the number of persons who are able to use mapping services by making these types of application easier to use by all people, including those with visual impairments. Thus our user group includes both sighted persons and those with visual impairments (including the elderly).

 

Facts about project HaptiMap:

Project partners:

  • Lund University, Sweden
  • Queen’s University, Belfast, Great Britain
  • University of Glasgow, Great Britain
  • Fundación ROBOTIKER, Spain
  • OFFIS e.V., Germany
  • Commissariat à l'énergie atomique, France
  • Siemens AG, SIS, C-LAB, Germany
  • Finnish Geodetic Institute, Finland
  • BMT Group Ltd, Great Britain
  • Lunds kommun, Sweden
  • Organización Nacional de Ciegos Españoles, Spain
  • Kreis Soest, Germany
  • NAVTEQ B.V, The Netherlands

 

HaptiMap is a four year integrated project. It has a total budget of 9 270 087 Euros and receives financial support from the European Commission in the Seventh Framework Programme, under the Cooperation Programme  ICT Information and Communication Technologies (Challenge 7 Independent living and inclusion) with 6 670 000 Euro. The project is coordinated by Charlotte Magnusson, Certec, Department of Design Sciences, Lund University, Sweden.