Assistive Technology News – January 2023 round up

Assistive technology news, policy and events. Clive, smiling at the camera

DispATches is written by Clive Gilbert, freelance research consultant and specialist writer in public policy, social affairs and technology.

Born with cerebral palsy, Clive is an extensive user of assistive technology and has first-hand experience of the transformative potential that technology can bring to the lives of disabled people. 

Policy and Campaigns  

Tech Developments and Innovations  

A person on a video call to another, who is doing sign language.

Training, Events, and Professional Development 

Free webinar: Higher Education PSBAR accessibility requirements webinar with UCISA and The University of Sheffield, 7 February 2023 

  • Join AbilityNet, UCISA and the University of Sheffield to discuss the latest in Digital Accessibility in the HE/FE sector.

Thursday Thirties, every Thursday 

  • CENMAC hosts a new series of weekly thirty-minute webinars focusing on educational assistive technologies.

My Voice, My Identity, 24 January 2023

  • SpeakUnique and Smartbox explore how quality, personalised synthetic communication aid voices are helping people with limited or no speech retain their identities.

ATIA 2023, 31 January - 4 February 2023

  • One of the world's largest conferences on assistive technology meets in Florida, with selected sessions streamed online.
Training discount for dispATches readers 

Use the code Dispatches10 to get 10% off AbilityNet's Accessibility and Inclusive Design training, including 'PDF accessibility', 'Accessible social media', and more. 


Tech Tip

How to use the "Speak items under the pointer" feature in macOS 15 Ventura

  • Audio feedback can be a useful accessibility feature for a variety of reasons, from selecting "OK" on a notification to surfing the Web and reading a PDF. In macOS 13 Ventura, you can set up your computer to speak the item that is currently under the pointer. This includes paragraphs of text, image descriptions, and buttons. Read about how to use this feature on AbilityNet's My Computer, My Way website.

Get in touch

  • Email Clive if you have a comment about the stories in this newsletter - or to suggest a contribution for next month.

Further resources 

AbilityNet provides a range of free services to help disabled people and older people. If you can afford it, please donate to help us support older and disabled people through technology