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Re: [ontolog-forum] visualizing ontologies to blind people

To: "[ontolog-forum]" <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Cc: Janina Sajka <janina@xxxxxxxxxxx>
From: chaim Zins <chaim.zins@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 20 Mar 2012 15:46:13 +0200
Message-id: <CAJM0GDsijCZr1AXSTLizA0sLfKH6qpVugtga-W8uiUXq6L5SQg@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Dear Friends & Colleagues,

Last week I published a short post. The responses were overwhelming. The post was transferred to other lists and translated into several languages. The responses varied from philosophical reflections to practical ideas.

Thanks for your invaluable responses, and, as promised, I summarize the conclusions. 

Background. The idea to visualize the 10 Pillars of Knowledge (10PK) map to blind people popped up from a call to develop educational programs for blind students. This seems incredible challenging: to enable blind students 'to see', at a glance, the structure of human knowledge and understand the meaningful relations among the main fields.

Theoretical rationale. 
(1) Cognitive maps shape the way think.
(1) Printed maps shape our cognitive maps.
(3) 10PK is a systematic and comprehensive map of human knowledge
(4) 10PK may shape our cognitive maps of human knowledge.
[See my book "10 Pillars of Knowledge", accessible in my website]

Educational goals:
(1) Enable blind students to understand the structure of knowledge. 
(2) Enable blind students to perceive the structure of our world (world map). 
(3) Enable blind students to be familiar with the masterpieces of visual arts.

(1) Blind people differ by the degree of their visual impairment (vision loss).
(2) Most of them can partially see. Many are totally blind (100 blindness).     
(3) Many of the totally blind are not familiar with the map of the world.
(4) Many of the totally blind are not familiar with the masterpieces of human heritage.
[Cynical people might say that many people with full sight too are not familiar with the structure of the world and our cultural heritage. I agree.]

Thought experiment.
Are you familiar with the structure of human knowledge? [Certainly yes!] 
Are you familiar with the map of the world? [Certainly yes!] 
Are you familiar with the masterpieces of art? [Certainly yes!] 
Now, (1) Close your eyes. 
(2) Ignore the basic visual knowledge. 
(3) Imagine the world you live; a world that you do not have any visual knowledge about it.
(4) Now plan how to teach totally blind people our basic visual knowledge. 

Planned project.
The planned project is designed for partially sighted, and totally blind.
It will use digital presentations, Braille codes, and oral explanations.
It will explain the 10PK map, the 10 icons (masterpieces) that represent each of the pillars, and the 10PK knowledge tree
Note that the project depends on the approval of the grant. 

Please feel free to share your reflections and visions. Thanks

Sincerely and all the best,

Chaim Zins
10PK map & knowledge tree

On Fri, Mar 16, 2012 at 6:24 PM, Peter Yim <peter.yim@xxxxxxxx> wrote:
Chaim and All,

Let me copy this message to colleague Janina Sajka (a long time
contributor to accessibility standards) to see if she might chime in.

I googled and found this recent post from Janina -
http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/wai-xtech/2012Mar/0052.html -
where you can find her contact information, and the kind of things she
is championing lately.

Regards. =ppy
Peter P. Yim

On Fri, Mar 16, 2012 at 2:31 AM, chaim Zins <chaim.zins@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> Dear Colleagues,
> Do you have any creative idea how to visualize hierarchical ontologies to
> blind people using Braille codes or other means?
> Do you know of relevant projects?
> Thanks for sharing your reflections on this challenging idea.
> Chaim Zins
> 10 Pillars of Knowledge: Map of Human Knowledge
> www.success.co.il
Chaim Zins, PhD.
Knowledge Mapping Research, Jerusalem, Israel;
Visiting Professor at the Information Science Post-Graduate Program, São
Paulo State University (UNESP), Marilia, Brazil.
Mail: Chaim Zins
26 Hahaganah St, Jerusalem 97852, Israel;
Tel/Fax: 972-2-5816705
Email: chaim.zins@xxxxxxxxx
Homepage: www.success.co.il
10 Pillars of Knowledge: Map of Human Knowledge

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