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December 20, 2012

NCAM receives FCC Chairman's Award

At a ceremony on December 19, 2012, at FCC headquarters, the Carl and Ruth Shapiro Family National Center for Accessible Media at WGBH (NCAM) received the FCC Chairman’s Award for Advancement in Accessibility. Honoring engineers, researchers and other technologists who contribute to technological innovation for people with disabilities in communication-related areas, the award recognizes NCAM’s development of Media Access Mobile technology, designed to serve visitors to cultural institutions who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, blind or visually impaired or who speak languages other than English. The innovative development, led by NCAM’s Brad Botkin, provides synchronized text or audio description, in any combination of languages, all delivered simultaneously over a WiFi network and displayed on most common WiFi-enabled hardware (e.g., iOS and Android devices, and notebooks, laptops). Captions and descriptions are streamed to users’ devices in synchronization with media displayed by a museum in an exhibit, theater or other venue. “Media Access Mobile is just one of a long list of NCAM-pioneered innovations that use cutting-edge technologies to overcome barriers to access to culture, education, entertainment and the workplace,” notes NCAM Director Larry Goldberg. “Thanks to Brad and his colleagues Rich Caloggero, Geoff Freed, Bryan Gould and Peter Villa for making MAM the latest solution from NCAM.” See a video demonstration of Media Access Mobile technology, or read technical information about how MAM works. This video will be on display in the FCC Technology Education Center until the end of the December.