gh's NIMAS conversion service provides an easy way to make instructional materials accessible.
What is NIMAS?
NIMAS stands for National Instructional Material Accessibility Standard. NIMAS is a significant advancement in providing students with visual disabilities accessible textbook content. By specifying a national standard by which publishers are required to provide textbook files, the potential exists to produce digital and Braille content in a more cost effective and expeditious manner. Learn more about NIMAS and legislation.
gh, LLC takes the lead
gh, LLC is a leader in the conversion of various publisher file types into content that meets the NIMAS specification. Through gh's Media Conversion Process it accepts multiple file types and transforms them into XML-based NIMAS files. These files are validated against the standard and are also evaluated for their usability with DAISY readers. gh's expertise is derived from its active participation on the NFF Technical Panel, its work with the current NIMAS committee, and its strong background in XML file conversion.
What is NIMAS best for?
NIMAS files are most effectively used for literary-based textbooks. There is still going to be a void that will need to be filled for math and science material in an accessible format. Currently, secondary school students are in large part unable to receive accessible instructional materials in mathematics and science due to its varying levels of complexity. A project called MathSpeak is underway to produce and convert these materials into an ANSI/NISO digital talking book format that will hopefully be later adopted into the NIMAS specification. To find out more about MathSpeak visit the website at www.gh-mathspeak.com.
As of February 2007, DAISY has approved the Digital Talking Book Modular Extension for Mathematics, which allows MathML-encoded math content to be embedded into a Digital Talking Book. This is a first step in filling the void of math and science material in an accessible content. The NIMAS committee is expected to incorporate this modular extension into the NIMAS specification.
Using NIMAS files
The gh PLAYER 2.2, was the first fully featured NIMAS digital content reader available for students with disabilities. The gh PLAYER is based on universal design concepts that enhance the reading productivity for persons who are blind or low vision, but also has features to assist individuals with learning disabilities, and even individuals without disabilities. Special features include text-to-speech with high quality voices; magnification of 1x to 16x; contrast and color adjustments; bookmarking; navigation by page, section, segment, word, and time; index navigation; and smart table navigation.
For Macintosh users, ReadHear™ Mac is available for reading NIMAS content. ReadHear Mac has all of the key features of gh PLAYER.