Improvements in technology forces Braille community to adopt a n - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Improvements in technology forces Braille community to adopt a new code


MADISON (WKOW) -- A non-profit organization in Madison transcribes dozens of books each year into Braille.

Now, it has even more work to do. Improvements in technology and new practices are forcing many in the Braille community to adopt a new Braille code.

The new Braille code will be adopted in about a year and a half, but a local volunteer library and transcribing service has already started to make the transition.

The Braille Library and Transcribing Service in Madison has been helping the blind around the country read since 1971. It's not just Wisconsin, they serve everyone.

Their library contains over 2,000 books in Braille, which helps hundreds of readers, including children. Braillists transcribe everything from text books, to children's books to manuals for electronic devices.

Braille uses contractions and short form words and some of those are going to be eliminated because it confuses the computer and new technology. This is forcing businesses and braille readers to learn new symbols.

"The system has to be changed because of computer codes and mathematical codes and all kind of things that are changing the way Braille is going to look," said Karen Perzentka, who is legally blind and proof reads Braille at the organization. "There are some people that say don't change anything because they're going to eliminate a lot of shortcuts in Braille."

All English speaking countries around the world will adopt the new system.

Click here for more information about the Braille Library and Transcribing Services in Madison.

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