Project Summary

 

The goal of ViSiCAST is to improve the quality of life of Europe's deaf citizens by widening their access to services and facilities enjoyed by the community at large. The project identifies a number of aspects of life where the integration of deaf individuals in society would be improved if sign language communication was available: access to public services, commercial transactions and entertainment, learning and leisure opportunities including broadcast and interactive television and the e-commerce and the World Wide Web.

The chosen medium of communication for the deaf community is the European deaf languages and hence services and facilities must be made accessible through these recognised European languages. The core of the project will build and strengthen partner's detailed understanding of the richness and complex structure of these languages. At the same time it will develop complex computer linguistic methods to convert contextual speech and text to machine readable form fto generate appropriate intelligible sign.


  European legislation (being implemented within the statutes of the Member States) now requires that access to all services is made equally available to all citizens. This will mean that a very large number of companies, offering very diverse services, will have to address the issue of communication with sensory impaired people. At present, such communication relies heavily upon human sign language interpreters, but there can never be enough of these skilled individuals to be present at every face-to-face interaction or even to sign a large proportion of broadcast television.