[NFB-Braille-Discussion] Multi-line refreshable braille - originally about Canute display

Sahar's Beaded Creations sahar at inebraska.com
Mon Dec 2 17:55:44 UTC 2019

There are a few things out there, but when I was teaching at the Nebraska
Commission for the Blind, I wanted my students to learn the code as soon as
it was available. I wrote the book Simply Braille in 2015. It is now a third
edition. At the end of it there is a chapter on some of the old contractions
and punctuation symbols. It starts you from the beginning and goes through
the entire code. My book is certainly not the only one out there. 

Warm Regards,
Sahar Husseini
All About Braille
Braille Done Right
Home of Simply Braille, 
The book that teaches you how to read and write braille the right way,
And the home of braille transcriptions
To order the book Simply Braille, or for a braille transcription quote,
please email 
aboutbraille at gmail.com
You can also call (402) 742-4361

-----Original Message-----
From: NFB-Braille-Discussion <nfb-braille-discussion-bounces at nfbnet.org> On
Behalf Of Mike Jolls via NFB-Braille-Discussion
Sent: Monday, December 2, 2019 11:19 AM
To: nfb-braille-discussion at nfbnet.org
Cc: Mike Jolls <mrspock56 at hotmail.com>
Subject: Re: [NFB-Braille-Discussion] Multi-line refreshable braille -
originally about Canute display

Hi Jasmyn

I'll give you my 2 cents, and then let others chime in with their responses.

The UEB system is made up of a lot of the old English Braille plus changes
specific to UEB.  Some of the contractions in the old English Braille system
are gone.  Therefore, you have to know both the old, and then the  updates
for UEB - if you want to know it all and read either.

There are reasons for learning the old, and then the new after that.

If you want to read an older book, it will likely be embossed in the older
English Braille system.  If you only knew UEB, you wouldn't know some of the
contractions that are present with the older Braille since UEB got rid of

But there's nothing stopping you from starting UEB if that's mostly what
you're going to read.  If that's the case, find a good resource that teaches
the UEB system.  Then, supplement with the old as needed.

When I learned, it was about 13 years ago.  At that time, only the old
system was enforce.  Learning that, and then the updates for UEB was a good
way to go.  I wanted to read older pleasure books and they were printed in
the old English Braille.  So I was good to go there.  But I also knew I
wanted to read some current publications.  They were in UEB.  You can see
for me, knowing both was essential.
It just depends on what you're going to need to read out of the starting
gate.  If it's more UEB, then learn UEB.  If you know you're going to be
reading a combination, then do it like I did.

One thing that might be tricky are the rules of usage.  When I learned the
old way, there was a manual that I received that told what contractions
could be used together, and when, and so on .. the rules.  I haven't seen a
rulebook yet for UEB, but I bet it's going to be different since, as I said
above, some of the contractions are eliminated.

Good luck.

Mike Jolls

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From: Jasmyn Po<mailto:jazzyep94 at yahoo.com>
Sent: Sunday, December 1, 2019 11:57 AM
To: NFB Braille Discussion List<mailto:nfb-braille-discussion at nfbnet.org>;
nfb-braille-discussion at nfbnet.org<mailto:nfb-braille-discussion at nfbnet.org>
Cc: Mike Jolls<mailto:mrspock56 at hotmail.com>
Subject: Re: [NFB-Braille-Discussion] Multi-line refreshable braille -
originally about Canute display

What advice would you give give me for studying Braille? What advice would
you give me for studying the punctuation in Braille?
Sent from Yahoo Mail on

On Sun, Dec 1, 2019 at 7:59 AM, Mike Jolls via NFB-Braille-Discussion
<nfb-braille-discussion at nfbnet.org> wrote:
Then let's hope there are enough use-cases to warrant further development so
this technology can reach maturity.  Are you aware of a timeframe the
experts think this will require to be viable?  Of course that may be
difficult to say.  How can you say . "I'm going to be a genius in 5 years".

Thanks for the information.

Sent from
XxxunsWoZOHoB80hBfc6DrGbY%3D&reserved=0>> for Windows 10

From: Donald
Winiecki<mailto:dwiniecki at handid.org<mailto:dwiniecki at handid.org>>
Sent: Saturday, November 30, 2019 11:10 AM
To: NFB Braille Discussion
List<mailto:nfb-braille-discussion at nfbnet.org<mailto:nfb-braille-discussion@
Cc: Mike Jolls<mailto:mrspock56 at hotmail.com<mailto:mrspock56 at hotmail.com>>
Subject: Re: [NFB-Braille-Discussion] Multi-line refreshable braille -
originally about Canute display

Yes. There are such technologies in development. I work with a scientist who
is actively researching and applying this technology. Current focus is in
medical applications. However, speed of movement is still very very slow
compared to what would be required in a braille device, and the distance of
movements still not as far as would be required to create comfortable
braille reading.

I suspect the technology will have to be refined and mature in more
lucrative applications before it is adapted to braille devices. That said,
the benefits are undeniable. It could offer lighter and more reliable
operation than the micro magnetic and piezoelectric devices now available.

The multi-line Canute is mechanical and so far is showing itself to suit a
niche that simply did not exist previously with one-line displays. It can be
very valuable in education, STEM, law, and in music where its multi-line
display and apparent durability will be a major boon. I'm sure Bristol is
quite busy with future plans.


On Nov 30, 2019, at 9:07 AM, Mike Jolls via NFB-Braille-Discussion
<nfb-braille-discussion at nfbnet.org<mailto:nfb-braille-discussion at nfbnet.org>
<mailto:nfb-braille-discussion at nfbnet.org<mailto:nfb-braille-discussion at nfbn
et.org>>> wrote:
I'm reposting this as I erroneously sent it to one person.  I wanted to hear
from the entire list.

This was originally about the new Canute mechanical display.

While I appreciate the fact that a company has finally tried to create  a
multi-line braille display (the Canute) . something that people have been
wanting for some time . I think that what people would really want (and you
all can correct me if I'm wrong) would be a very portable device, such as a
tablet like an iPad, that was easily transportable, which supported multiple
lines of Braille.

I haven't actually seen the Canute.  Some comments are that it's a large
desk model.  Some have also said it's a bit noisy.  The best design of
course is one that is relatively lightweight, and relatively quiet (that is
if you can do it).  If a tablet could be produced that could "pop multiple
lines of braille out of the screen", that would seem a good fit.  Pop the
dots right out of the surface of the tablet (you actually deform the tablet
surface as there are no "holes" with pins that are pushed up through them as
in current displays), read the page, hit a button, then pull them back to
the screen and pop out the next page of dots.  It would have to be a large
screen, such as used in a tablet.  There would be a lot of rows.  Quiet
operation.  if it was built like a tablet, and you had various apps that
could recognize different file types, well then you could read a lot of
different types of material in one place (PDFs, Word documents, etc.).  Just
have your data on the cloud or on a memory stick and load it to the tablet
and you're ready.  Then go into braille mode.  You do it all on the tablet.
No external braille display needed.

In my last email. I was asking if anybody had heard about a company called
Tactus Technology that had been working on plastics that could be
"deformed".  I believe I contacted them about 7 or 8 years ago.  They said
they were at least thinking about an application for Braile and tablets.  If
that is possible, , this could make portable Braille that is very light, and
which had a lot of lines.  It seems that would really be a winning

I was wondering if anybody had heard anything about progress with this
potential technology?  Has anything been said in NFB circles?  Is the NFB
even aware of this possibility?

What do you all think of a technology if it could deliver such a solution?

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