Early Web applications were overwhelmingly visual. As the Web becomes an essential tool in knowledge work, electronic commerce, and virtual interaction, there is a need for auditory interfaces to Web applications. Such interfaces are particularly important for people with visual disabilities and print impairment, and for people who want to listen to information while their eyes are occupied elsewhere (e.g., in navigating through an environment). In this paper we describe the design and testing of an innovative auditory search engine. This search engine provides its output in a more oral friendly format by using real-time text categorization to organize search results into a voice menu format. Initial results show that the auditory search engine prototype works well for both sighted and partially sighted users.
Proc. of The Sixth International Conference on Auditory Display, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia USA April 2-5, 2000