Project AEGIS (Ontario) – led by OCAD University’s Inclusive Design Research Centre (IDRC) – is wrapping up after six years of work. Since 2008, the interdisciplinary team sought to answer the needs of people who face challenges when using conventional information and communication technologies (ICTs).
“Our work was based on the recognition that, because people are not standardized, we need affordable alternatives to mass-produced products that are a better fit for human diversity,” says Jutta Treviranus, the IDRC director and Project AEGIS (Ontario)’s principal investigator.
Project AEGIS (Ontario) focused on two communities: developers of ICT infrastructure, applications and services; and end users who experience physical, sensory or cognitive disabilities that pose barriers to conventional ICT access. Researchers developed a wide array of innovative solutions to address these design gaps, including
- websites that automatically respond to users’ preferences (Fluid Infusion),
- a system that lets people with spinal cord injuries independently operate their smartphones and tablets (Tecla Access), and
- a tool that lets researchers remotely measure the usability and accessibility of mobile applications in real world use (OpenVULab).
OCAD U’s IDRC led Project AEGIS (Ontario) in partnership with York University, Ryerson University, the University of Toronto, the University of Ontario Institute of Technology and 21 other academic and corporate partners in Canada and Europe. Project AEGIS (Ontario) was a partner of Project AEGIS (Europe), and funding for the Ontario initiative was provided by the Ontario Research Fund – Research Excellence Program.