Symbol support: A research concerning the development of a web authoring tool in the WWAAC project
Sammanfattning: This Master's thesis is a part of the present EC-project called WWAAC, World Wide Augmentative and Alternative Communication. WWAAC is a co-operation between a few companies and organisations in Europe that aim for making a larger part of Internet services more accessible for people with communication difficulties. The users are often not capable of reading, writing or speaking so they may use different symbol systems to communicate, a range of methods referred to under the label of Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC). The tools that are being developed within the WWAAC project will make it easier for AACusers to browse the Internet, send e-mail and chat. The work performed in this Master's thesis is related to the WWAAC Supportive Web Browser development and the Web Authoring Tool. The assignment was to research the possibilities of developing a Web Authoring Tool, a tool for developing web pages with the kind of symbol support that the AAC users need. The symbol support will be a part of the page's source code and it provides the possibility to present information with representations from different communication systems. Different approaches were examined, including both a stand-alone Java application and extensions to Macromedia Dreamweaver MX, which is a commercial web designers' tool. The Java application was developed to determine the required functionality of the extension. Based on the functional requirements a research was performed to determine what parts needed to be implemented in order to create the extension. The development resulted in a partly implemented Macromedia Dreamweaver MX extension. Instructions for further development, that will complete the product, are also specified.
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