Group eyes Web accessibility by voice commands

Group eyes Web accessibility by voice commands

The government's interagency XML Working Group is looking at using of the Voice Extensible Markup Language protocol to make existing Hypertext Markup Language information on Web sites accessible to disabled and other users by telephone.

Promoted by the VoiceXML Forum of Piscataway, N.J.'a consortium of 520 companies'VoiceXML structures applications to make site information accessible by voice commands. VoiceXML 2.0 is a draft standard submitted to the World Wide Web Consortium.

The framework integrates markup languages for common dialogues, grammar, speech synthesis and natural-language semantics. More information appears at www.voicexml.org.

The XML Working Group met this month with representatives of Tellme Networks Inc. of Bethesda, Md. Tellme's Greg O'Connell, director of public-sector operations, said the company uses a long-distance carrier's telephone backbone and the Voice Advantage suite of applications to convert HTML content into XML content accessible by voice commands.

'S.M. Menke

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