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Dasher is an alternative text entry system that searches for suggestions without the discrete input through a keyboard. The software is invaluable to people with disabilities who use it to type or speak and who can’t control a regular physical or on-screen keyboard. Dasher is instead driven by continuous gesture using a dynamic predictive display, a concept originally developed by the University of Cambridge Inference group.

The dasher project aims to help all individuals with disabilities who use similar assistive technology by developing a modular word and letter prediction engine that is allows for a range of language models to be used - and new ones be trialed out, including potentially integration with context sensitive search prediction provided by search engine providers. The new dasher will provide a fresh codebase matchin the features that current users require - whilst improving on the user experience for new users. Thanks to a permissive open source software license anyone will be able to develop additional innovations on top of dasher, including commercial entities that produce bespoke systems. This will help increase the ability for employers to hire people that depend on this type of input mechanisms.

  • The project's own website:

Run by Ace Centre

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This project was funded through the NGI0 Discovery Fund, a fund established by NLnet with financial support from the European Commission's Next Generation Internet programme, under the aegis of DG Communications Networks, Content and Technology under grant agreement No 825322. Applications are still open, you can apply today.

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Please check out NLnet's theme funds, such as NGI Assure, NGI0 Discovery (which is focussed on search, discovery and discoverability) and the Internet Hardening Fund.

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