News Archive

First DAISY Newsletter

Read the first DAISY newsletter online by following this link

Awards for DAISY: The Dr. Dayton M. Forman Memorial Award and the ICAES' Collaboration and Coordination Award

Leaders of the DAISY Consortium win two prestigious awards.

Ingar Beckman Hirschfeldt and George Kerscher are the proud recipients for 2001 of the Dr. Dayton M. Forman Memorial Award. This prestigious award, established by the CNIB Library Board in January 1996, recognizes outstanding leadership in the advancement of library and information services for Canadians who are blind or vision-impaired. It is offered in tribute to Dr. Dayton M. Forman, an exceptional humanitarian and longstanding CNIB volunteer, who exemplified the leadership required to make a difference for more than half a million people who are blind or vision-impaired throughout Canada. Award winners receive a bound copy of the Award Citation, together with a silver medal bearing the likeness of Dr. Forman.

Ingar and George were recognised for their outstanding achievements in overcoming barriers to information equity for people who are blind or print-disabled in Canada and beyond. Their achievements were seen as broad in scope, of an enduring nature and significant in terms of library and information services as a whole; demonstrating great leadership and innovation, and serving as a positive role model for others.

Ingar Beckman Hirschfeldt has been President of the DAISY Consortium since its formation in 1996, and as director of the Swedish Library of Talking-Books and Braille she has led the development effort to create and implement the worldwide standard for digital talking-books, the DAISY standard. George Kerscher, who pioneered accessible eText documents for people who are blind or print disabled as long ago as the late 1980s, has been Project Manager and Technical Director of the DAISY Consortium since 1997.

"I am deeply honored by this news", George said, "I look forward to standing with Ingar to receive the award on behalf of everybody who has contributed to the efforts of the DAISY Consortium. Ingar is the leader we all want in this effort to improve access to information for persons with print disabilities."

Stop Press

We are delighted to inform you that DAISY is a winner in the International Access Awards Ppogram for 2001 of the International Coalition of Access Engineers and Specialists (ICAES). The purpose of the awards Program is to recognize significant innovative technical contributions to the access engineering profession. All entries were judged on innovation, creativity, scope-of-benefit to consumers and the universality of the product or service.

The Daisy Consortium, National Information Standards Organization (NISO) and Open eBook Forum (OeBF) have won ICAES' Collaboration and Coordination Award, recognising their successful endeavours to resolve and promote compatibility and interoperability. The work of DAISY, NISO and OeBF has converged nicely in the development of file specifications for Digital Talking-Books and eBooks. In announcing the Award ICAES stated that "... digital talking-books based on the open standards being developed by Daisy and NISO provide significant advances in usability and functionality for people with print disabilities. The Open eBook specification, a base format for mainstream electronic books, incorporates features to promote accessibility. These organisations are working together to build a future where the world of electronic books will be open to all."

ICAES is a non-profit membership organisation which fosters international co-operation and support for the design of products that are as accessible and usable by persons with disabilities, as economically possible, and technically feasible. Achieving this mission will deliver better products, for all consumers, on a global basis. For more information go to

The Talking Book Library of the Austrian Blind Union joins the DAISY Consortium

A new associate member joins the DAISY Consortium

The Austrian Blind Union (ABU) understand themselves as a self-help organization of blind and partially sighted people. Its major task consists of representing the interests of its members within all ranges of the public life and above all: their efforts for integration in schools, working places and as well against all discriminations in society. For this reason the ABU supports all active persons and institutions, who use themselves in this sense for blind and partially sighted people.

Read more about the Austrian Blind Union at

Interview with William Jolley

William Jolley begins his work as Secretary General to the DAISY Consortium

William Jolley from Australia has just begun his work as Secretary General of the DAISY Consortium. The task of the Secretary General is mainly to organise the work within the DAISY Consortium, lead the administrative work and be the official person in the PR-work.

DAISY 2.02 Specification adopted as formal recommendation

On February 28, 2001, the DAISY 2.02 was adopted as a formal recommendation of the DAISY Consortium.

This specification is intended to be the basis for DTB production until the DAISY 3/NISO spec is stable, and until DAISY 3/NISO production and playback tools are available. One of the intentions with 2.02 is to provide document structure requirements that enable a smooth future conversion path to DAISY 3/NISO.

See DAISY 2.02 specification
Download DAISY 2.02 specification as zip file

DAISY Technical Conference for 2001

Representatives of the DAISY Consortium will hold a conference in conjunction with the large meeting in CA, commonly known as CSUN.

The DAISY Technical Conference 2001 took place on March 16, 17, & 18 at Marriott LAX, Los Angeles, USA.

State-of-the-art DAISY Digital Talking Book (DTB) production and playback technologies highlighted the conference, with a focus on "END-TO-END Solutions".

Issues and options, new approaches and standards,were presented and discussed. 

See Agenda 

DAISY and Huseby Resource Center

Huseby Resource centre in Norway has produced educational books directly in DAISY format since July 2000 with good results.

Lena Nordstrom and Jesper Klein from the Swedish Library of Talking Books and Braille visited them.

Read the full article

Talking Tapes/Textbooks on Tape new associate member

The DAISY Consortium is pleased to welcome this new Associate Member.

Talking Tapes/Textbooks on Tape is a 60-year-old, 501(c)3 non-profit organization serving over 30,000 children with special needs in over 3,000 schools across the The United States, “Our goal is to bring the world of books to those unable to benefit directly from the printed word”.

Independent Society of the Blind (Singapore), new associate member

The DAISY Consortium is pleased to welcome another Associate Member.

The Independent society of The Blind (Singapore) is a self-help, voluntary welfare organization. Amongst the many programs and activities, this consumer organization provides braille support to its members and also to blind students.

Brilliance Audio Inc. new friend to the DAISY Consortium

The DAISY Consortium is please to welcome this new Friend.

Brilliance Audio Inc. is the largest independent commercial audiobook publisher in the United States.

William Jolley elected to DAISY Consortium Secretary General

At the DAISY board meeting in Copenhagen, January 29-30, 2001, William Jolley was elected as the first Secretary General of the DAISY Consortium.

William Jolley has used Braille since early childhood, supplementing it with the audio and e-text formats for both study and leisure reading. For the past eight years William has been an Executive Committee member of the World Blind Union and vice-president in the East Asia Pacific region. Until he left Blind Citizens Australia as its Executive Officer in May 2000, he was Project Manager for the WBU Fifth General Assembly and associated events. His involvement in Vietnam has been a highlight, with 2000 blind people having been taught to read and write in Braille by the 125 teachers whom we trained over the past six years.

In a few weeks you can read an interview with William on our Web site.

Read full press release (Feb. 8)

New DAISY Consortium board from 2001

Here is information about the 2001 Board members and their organizations.

The new board consists of one member from each full member association.

Ingar Beckman Hirschfeldt TPB Sweden, President
Bernhard Heinser, SBS Switzerland, Treasurer
John Churchill, RFB&D USA
Elke Dittmer, AG Germany
Rosemary Kavanagh, CNIB Canada
Hiroshi Kawamura, JSRPD Japan
Francisco Martínez Calvo, ONCE Spain
Peter Osborne, RNIB UK
Keun Hae Youk, Korean DAISY Consortium
Maarten Verboom, The Federation of Dutch Libraries for the blind

The board representatives from DBB Denmark and Australia New Zealand Blindness Agencies are vacant.

New full member: Korean DAISY Consortium

The DAISY Consortium is pleased to welcome this new Full Member.

The Korea Braille Library has been an associate member. Now the Korea Braille Library (KBL), Korean Blind Union (KBU), and Hasang Welfare Center (HWC) has formed a Korean DAISY Consortium and become a full member of the DAISY Consortium.

Sight Savers International new associate member

The DAISY Consortium is pleased to welcome this new Associate Member.

Sight Savers International (UK) is a charity working to prevent and cure blindness in developing countries. 

Sight Savers currently operates in over 25 developing countries in Africa, Asia and the Caribbean. Sight Savers' programmes are developed in collaboration with local partners. 

Swedish library goes digital

On the 1st of November The Swedish Library of Talking Books and Braille, TPB, made the historical step to digital recording. New talking books will be recorded digitally in the DAISY format and then copied into both digital and analogue talking books. Approximately 1500 new titles will be digitally recorded during 2001, and some additional 700 study titles.

General Meeting in Kyoto

The General Meeting of the DAISY Consortium was held in November 15-17, 2000 in Kyoto, Japan.

News Articles on Local Projects

Two articles concerning developments in Japan and Denmark.

From the Article of the month.

Japanese libraries go digital (Dec. 23, 1999)

Access to all sorts of information - Utopia or a Realistic Goal ? (DBB, Denmark) (Mar. 24, 2000)