Cloud Computing for People with Disabilities

chirpskulkInternet and Web Development

Nov 3, 2013 (4 years and 8 months ago)


Cloud Computing:

A New Opportunity for People
with Disabilities

Clayton Lewis, NIDRR Consultant

Coleman Institute

March 13, 2012

What is cloud computing?




Very low cost for services we already have

Much easier to develop and deploy new

A new world of useful services, at very
low cost, available everywhere to everyone

Why Is Cloud Computing Important for
People with Disabilities?

Cloud technology can be used to make access
to information and services
much easier
people with disabilities.

User profiles in the cloud can allow computers
automatically personalize
themselves to
meet the needs of



Global Public Inclusive Infrastructure initiative

Led by Gregg Vanderheiden (U Wisconsin), with
NIDRR support

International effort to improve the user
experience for computer users with

… and promote the development of more and
better access technology.

How it Works

profile in
the cloud

Enhanced browser
accesses user

presentation of Web
page to meet user’s
individual needs

How it Works

profile in
the cloud

program helps user
identify content
and applications
that can be
configured to meet
their needs

Application Scenarios

Automatic setup of public computer in library
or shared computer at home

In school, children get the presentations they
need… and they can access them at home, too

Automatic setup of workplace

More in vision video at

Support for Software Providers

GPII infrastructure enhancements aim to

Simplify the development of accessible

Support online delivery of tools and services

personalization for access

subscriber authentication

New and better services will result

GPII Status


$11M European Commission project to
implement key aspects of GPII

Launched Nov 2, 2011

Additional amounts in international matches

NIDRR committed to the development of this
potential in the USA

NIDRR’s Cloud Initiative

Pilot implementations in partnership with
other agencies

Health care, education, voting

Development work to complement
international efforts

Cooperation on strategic research

A Word of Caution

cloud technology will not solve all of our

there is a risk of exaggerated expectations and
mistaken resource allocations

parallel: technology in the schools

success with technology requires investment
in people and their skills

we need to grasp the opportunities of the
cloud, but with a sober sense of reality!


Questions or comments?

Follow up:,

The Cloud Opportunity

Use the capabilities of the cloud…

…to make it easier for people with disabilities
to access the programs and services available
in the cloud, and

…to make it easier for service developers to
provide access for users with disabilities