Google has launched a new search service for visually impaired users, called Google Accessible search.
The software has been developed by Google research scientist, TV Raman. He is blind himself, so wanted to make it easier for visually impaired people to find what they are looking for on the internet.
The search service is part of the Google Labs program. Google Accessible search works by sorting search results according to the simplicity and usability of their page layouts.
Raman explains: “Because I can’t see I use a device that converts web text to speech. If the information I’m after is on a visually busy page, I have to sort through that page to find the text I want — an extra step that can sometimes be very time-consuming.
“Being able to identify sites that have less distractions makes it easier and faster for people using devices that convert web text to speech.”
The solution is still in development, but the company hopes to attract feedback from visually impaired web surfers in an attempt to make it a better solution.