High Tech Center Training Unit Advisory Committee Meeting
Friday, October 4, 2002
Carl Brown††††† ††††††††††† HTCTU, De Anza †††† ††††††††††† HTCTU Director††††††††††† present
Myra Lerch††††† ††††††††††† Butte College†††††††††††† ††††††††††† Region 1††††††††† ††††††††††† present
Thad Selmants† ††††††††††† Sierra College†††††††††††† ††††††††††† Region 2††††††††† †††††† ††††††††††† present
Carolyn Fiori††† ††††††††††† College of San Mateo†† ††††††††††† Region 3††††††††† ††††††††††† present
Kathleen Allen††††††††††† Chabot College ††††††††††† Region 4††††††††† ††††††††††† present
Laura Ingram †† ††††††††††† Merced College ††††††††††† Region 5††††††††† ††††††††††† present
Laurie Vasquez††††††††††† Santa Barbara City College Region 6††††††††† ††††††††††† present
Lyn Clemons††† ††††††††††† El Camino College ††††††††††† Region 7††††††††† ††††††††††† present
Mike Bistany††† ††††††††††† Irvine Valley College† ††††††††††† Region 8††††††††† †††††††† not present
Brian Brautigam††††††††††† Riverside College††††††† ††††††††††† Region 9††††††††† ††††††††††† present
Carl Fielden††††† ††††††††††† Grossmont College†††††† ††††††††††† Region 10††††††† ††††††††††† present
Peggy Tate†††††† ††††††††††† Chancellorís Office††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† present
Laurie Vasquez is a member of the advisory committee for Freedom Scientific.† She invited all members to share with her any issues regarding JAWS. Sean Keegan from the High Tech Center Training Unit has posted a WebSite where comments about JAWS can be posted to Laurie Vasquez.
Horizon Live is a Web based conferencing tool that is in the process of being adopted by the California community colleges to support administrative conferencing.† Sean Keegan, Web accessibility specialist for the High Tech Center Training Unit, has worked closely with Horizon Live to review the accessibility features of the program.† Concern was expressed that over time, Horizon Live has come to depend more and more on Sean Keegan as a professional expert in the field of accessibility rather than developing their own expertise in-house. Carl Brown clarified that the role of the HTCTU is to lend support to product development groups in the area of accessibility after their in-house staff has been unable to resolve the problem.† The HTCTU is not a replacement for a software developerís responsibility to have knowledgeable accessibility staff.
It was noted that the Access Resource Website has been taken over by the Chancellorís Office which will be posting materials once EOPS, Matriculation and DSPS get together to coordinate how the information will be posted.
DETAC has put together 3 task forces, one of which will focus on course management, system licensing and hosting. The cost of course management tools is rising and creating serious questions about how the community colleges will be able to maintain distance education courses which have been created using those tools.
Myra Lerch discussed her collegeís recent purchase of the DataTel program. The program has been evaluated by several colleges and although Myra feels confident that it is accessible, she would like an opportunity to further evaluate the program against the 508 standards. Carl Brown reiterated that complex applications such as DataTel would need extensive evaluation which might take months to complete. Peggy Tate suggested developing an initial review like an information sheet, a checklist to determine accessibility before contacting Sean Keegan. It was also suggested that High Tech Center specialists become more involved in the process of evaluating large-scale, campuswide software applications and that they should serve as resources for accessibility questions when their campuses are undertaking such evaluations.
The Galvin Group will begin a formal program review for the High Tech Center on October 29 Ė 31, 2002. An initial meeting with Jan Galvin and colleagues took place at the HTCTU conference room last Oct 3 with Chancellorís Office staff Peggy Tate and Scott Hamilton in attendance. The meeting reviewed the entire process that will take place during the Galvin Group visit. Three members from the advisory committee were selected to be interviewed by the Galvin Group, Myra Lerch, Carl Fielden and Caroline Fiori. The High Tech Center Training Unit is well prepared and looking forward to a positive and productive experience.
Book counts on the AMX database are rising steadily as a result of contributions from the distributed scanning network. There were a number of inquiries as to whether or not the HTCTU would expand the distributed scanning network. HTCTU is still waiting for a response from the Chancellorís Office on approval to use the unspent funds from last yearís grant.† Upon approval, the HTCTU would begin accepting invitations from community colleges that have indicated an interest in participating in the distributed scanning network.† A special effort will be made to locate sites in the Los Angeles area. Carl Brown indicated that he had spoken with ATPC staff who have made it clear that they have no interest in expanding their scanning operation at the present time although they were interested in learning more about commercial scanning operations.
For the last year, the HTCTU and Chancellorís Office have been building a production resource at Folsom Prison in two areas, Braille production and the production of closed-captioned video and video transcripts. HTCTU has placed equipment on loan to the prison where he has grown into a successful and ongoing project.† The staff at Folsom would now like a steady stream of work. In reviewing this project, the HTCTU has agreed to take responsibility for the closed-captioned and video transcripts component. Folsom Prison currently is capable of doing 12 videos a month although it is still unclear how many video transcripts they could do. In cooperation with the California community colleges Chancellor's office, Gaeir Dietrich will coordinate with Folsom state prison and California community colleges wishing to participate in this project to develop a reliable shipping and tracking methodology. It was stressed that there may be indefinite production delays as a result of lockdowns and other disturbances at the prison. It was also noted that sexually explicit material or material which includes gang violence should not be sent for captioning. Colleges receiving video transcripts for closed-captioned videos through this program agreed to post those titles on the AMX database to be shared by other colleges.† Closed captioning of videos and video transcripts will be provided at no charge to the California community colleges.
AMX database is expanding. There are now more than 500 book titles and 700 closed-captioned titles.† The HTCTU is working on a method to track new content as it is added to the database. AMX only provides contact information about the person posting the resource. There is no content (books or transcripts) available on the database.
Kathleen Allen and Laura Ingram, both attended the last ATPC advisory committee meeting and both agreed that the ATPC was much more receptive in terms of openness to suggestions. There was a discussion concerning the timing of Braille processing from the ATPC. Advantages of using the ATPC include timeliness and cost issues. It was generally felt that the ATPC was still gaining familiarity with its work and continuing to evolve.† The ATPC is interested in becoming the single point of contact for electronic text from publishers by January 1st, 2003. To accomplish this, they need help from the community colleges in providing them with a realistic number of book requests and feedback to prove that they are capable of fulfilling their objectives. Carl Brown encouraged advisory members to support their local colleges in sending books and text requests to the ATPC in order to "stress test the resource" so that they can be fully satisfied that the ATPC has the capacity to meet their needs before being designated as the single point of contact.
The needs assessment survey is now being drafted and will be structured somewhat differently than previous versions.† It will be more narrative in scope asking people to talk about what they want from the HTCTU rather than simply completing a checklist. It will contain questions like:† ďBased on your day-to-day needs, what kinds of trainings would you like us to provide?Ē or ďHow can we make your participation in HTCTU trainings easier or more convenient?" The needs assessment survey is going to be much more qualitative and should be ready by the end of winter.
Sean Keegan, HTCTU Web Accessibility Trainer is currently doing two projects with CVC. A video shoot with CVC4 has just been completed and will be transferred to CD format for distribution during the CVC conference and statewide to all community college Disabled Student Services Program Directors. The CD contains short video clips of about 5-8 minutes duration on web accessibility, creating accessible PDF documents using Microsoft word, what to do with graphics, alt tag and colors on the web. This is formatted in SofTv with a web interface so people can click on different hyperlinks to get access to content.† The presentation is closed-captioned and fully accessible.† Sean is also collaborating with CVC1 on the development of a checklist based on the 508 and the W3C standards. The first half of this project will be focused on multi-media for the web.
Sean has been doing web accessibility trainings in Southern California and was also hoping to do more web masters presentation and trainings for colleges in northern California. Sean would also be interested in working with colleges or regions which are presently using MacroMedia Dreamweaver. Sean feels that MacroMedia Dreamweaver MX is presently the best platform for developing accessible content.
Sam Ogami, the newly hired Assistive Computer Technology Trainer, is currently working on MP3 technology using Kurzweil, Text Out Loud and Text to Speech. He is also looking into the software and hardware components of the Daisy players as an alternative, cost effective solution to players being used now. A free player on the web called TBP (textbook player) Reader is also being investigated. A Kurzweil 1000 version 7 was newly acquired and is still currently being evaluated. Q-pointer was also introduced, a voice command program used to control the windows interface.
Sam has been doing site visits for the last two months in order to familiarize himself with the various high-tech centers around the state.
Gaeir Dietrich, HTCTU Alternate Media Trainer reported on the status of the BrailleNote loan. All 12 BrailleNotes have gone out to 11 different colleges.† We hope to expand this program in the near future to accommodate the needs of students we are currently unable to meet. Gaeir has been doing offsite trainings on Braille and Introduction to Alternate Media at El Camino College. She indicated her willingness to provide this training at other off-campus locations for colleges that can guarantee 6-8 participants. Canon 5080C training will also be offered offsite for colleges with a 5080C scanner.† The training would include the use of the job separation sheets, understanding the color drop-out feature and understanding the file structure used by the distributed scanning network.† Gaeir also announced a new training that will be offered in the next quarter which will involve creating documents and Microsoft word that can be easily translated into other alternate formats.† Gaeir will be doing 3 presentations at the CAPED conference this October and 1 presentation with Sean Keegan in Boulder, Colorado this November. She also proposed a project with ATPC in using the Tiger Embosser for creating Dots Plus, Nemeth or Math Braille. Gaeir is still waiting for a response from the ATPC about this proposal.
High Tech Center Training Unit Request for Application (RFA)
The High Tech Center Training Unit Request for Application (RFA) Draft was presented by Peggy Tate to the committee. Peggy explained that the process was required in order to provide other community colleges with a chance to compete for the opportunity to host the High Tech Center Training Unit. The RFA consisted of four parts including: Introduction (background, scope, grant information), RFA Specification, Instruction and Evaluation criteria, and the Appendices. The comprehensive RFA was reviewed thoroughly by the members of the committee and few comments and modifications were agreed upon. Completed RFAs must be received at the Chancellorís Office by 5:00 p.m. Friday, January 31, 2003.
Minutes, HTCTU Advisory Meeting May 10, 2002
Chancellorís Office-CCC Student Services and Special Programs Division
Performance Review Agenda
Distributed Scanning Network list
Proposed Timeline for the HTCTU Grant #03-0103
Next Meeting: January 24, 2003
††††††††††††††††††††††† May 2, 2003