New online marketplace to create Assistive Technologies

REALISE is a new website that aims to radically change the lives of people struggling to use the internet, computers and mobile technology. Providing an online collaborative workspace, REALISE is a website where anybody can positively impact lives.

REALISE, the next evolution in collaborative working, will be launched at two events, RaATE in Coventry on 28th November and the KT-Equal event ‘Taming the Dragon; making technology work for us‘ in Chelmsford on 29th November. RaATE is the only UK conference focused on the latest innovations of Assistive Technology and the KT-Equal events focus on innovation for older people.

REALISE works by inviting anyone to submit ideas on how to make technology easier to use for all. These ideas are then openly discussed, helping to gain a consensus and move to an ‘incubation’ stage . In the incubation stage a lead group or individual can attempt to establish a fully fledged assistive technology project.

Projects developed so far include ATbar, a toolbar that can be added to any website allowing text to be read out loud, and forms to be spell checked for mistakes.

Project REALISE was developed through JISC funding awarded to the Universities of Southampton and Sheffield and will now continue to develop with the National Healthcare Technology Co-operative, Devices for Dignity (D4D).

REALISE will support some of the most innovative projects through the next steps of their development. Commercial companies and researchers are invited to become involved in open project development at any time.

Senior Research Associate at the University of Sheffield, Dr Peter Cudd said: “REALISE facilitates the development of software that ensures online equality. We hope the launch of this exciting online workspace at RaATe and KT-Equal will inspire individuals and companies to join us in this exciting endeavour.”