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Assistive Technology Rapid Integration and Construction Set - Open Source release ready for free download

For more than 2 years Assistive Technology (AT) experts from 7 EU countries have been working on the EU-funded project AsTeRICS. In February 2012 the first publicly available Open Source version has been placed for free download on the AsTeRICS website ( Although AsTeRICS can be used with a specially developed embedded platform, it can also be used on any WinXP, Vista or Win7 system and therefore can now be used by both scientists and end users all over the world. Comprehensive user and developer manuals can also be downloaded and enable anyone with basic technical skills to set up AsTeRICS for use by disabled persons.

The open source licensing of AsTeRICS makes it possible for users to acquire it free of charge and for software developers interested in Assistive Technology to use and further develop the system. This will bring benefits to an even larger number of disabled persons by bringing them to the independent living.

For the user’s convenience all developed hardware modules described in the specification and manuals will be available by the end of 2012.

What is AsTeRICS?

More than 2,6 million people in Europe have problems with their upper limbs and therefore many of them depend on Assistive Technologies. As the potential of the individual user is very specific and can either evolve or decline in time, adaptive ICT-based solutions are needed to let this population group participate in modern society. Such solutions are rarely available on today's market.

AsTeRICS provides a flexible and affordable construction set for realising user driven Assistive Technologies by combining emerging sensor techniques like Brain-Computer Interfaces and computer vision with basic actuators. People with reduced motor capabilities now have a flexible and adaptable technology at hand which enables them to access the Human-Machine-Interfaces (HMI) of the standard desktop but in particular also of embedded systems like mobile phones or smart home devices.

AsTeRICS implements a set of building blocks for the realisation of Assistive Technologies:

  • Sensors which allow the individual to exploit any controllable body or mind activity for interacting with human machine interfaces (HMI).
  • Actuators for interfacing to standard IT, to embedded systems and to interact with the environment
  • An Embedded Computing Platform that can be configured to combine sensors and actuators to tailored Assistive Technology solutions which support the full potential of an individual user.

Examples for the usage of AsTeRICS

Among others, some of the most interesting features of AsTeRICS are:

  • Use your webcam to control the mouse through head-movements,
  • Use any available sensor (button, strain gauge, sip-puff-switch, accelerometer, EOG, etc.) to simulate a mouse-click,
  • Control your home environment via AsTeRICS using infrared control or via accessing your Konnex environment,
  • Use alternative sensors to make your Playstation accessible,
  • Use the AsTeRICS Smart Vision Module to control a computer by using your eyes,
  • etc.

AsTeRICS revolutionises the concept of Assistive Technology: Assistive Technology today mostly focuses on a certain task or situation. Due to the growing importance of the PC, Assistive Technology has been oriented towards standard Human-Computer (HCI) or desktop interfaces. AsTeRICS respects the strong need for flexible, adaptable assistive functionalities accompanying people with disabilities away from the desktop, enabling them to interact with a diverse and fast changing set of deeply embedded devices in our modern environment.

Further updates of AsTeRICS Open Source will be available for download from the website in the near future. Also there is a forum available for feedback, questions to the developers and open discussions. For the forum, downloads and more information please refer to

Project Profile

Project acronym: AsTeRICS

Project full title: Assistive Technology Rapid Integration & Construction Set

Programme: 7th Framework Programme of the EU

Grant Agreement No.: 247730

Starting Date: 1 January 2010

Duration: 36 Month

Effort: 423.25 Person Month

Budget: 3 383 468 Euro

Funding: 2 649 674 Euro

AEGIS at Danish EU Presidency Conference

AEGIS was present with a booth at the Danish EU Presidency Conference: "Accessibility and Participation – Full Inclusion of People with Disabilities in Society" which took place in Copenhagen, Denmark on 5 and 6 March 2012. This link brings you to some pictures of the event. This official conference of the Danish EU Presidency examined how people with disabilities can exercise their rights to have access to society and be able to participate and make the same choices as non-disabled persons.

eChallenges e-2012 Conference and Exhibition

eChallenges e-2012 Conference and Exhibition takes place on 17 - 19 October 2012 in Lisbon, Portugal.

Call for Papers Deadline - 16 March

Supported by the European Commission, the 22nd annual eChallenges e-2012 Conference & Exhibition takes place in Lisbon, Portugal, 17 - 19 October. Focused on Applied ICT addressing major Societal Challenges, and showcasing strategic keynote presentations, technical and policy papers, case studies and workshops, eChallenges brings together senior representatives from leading commercial, government and research organisations around the world to share knowledge and experience, lessons learnt, good practice and innovation.

Please follow eChallenges e2012 on

Core Thematic Priorities for eChallenges e-2012

Applied ICT addressing Societal Challenges

  • eHealth and mHealth
  • eGovernment, eParticipation & eDemocracy
  • eInclusion
  • Digital Libraries and Cultural Heritage
  • Technology Enhanced Learning and ICT Skills
  • Intelligent Content and Semantics
  • Sustainable Environment

Emerging Technologies & Infrastructures

  • Future Internet & Smart Cities
  • eInfrastructures & Smart Grid
  • Living Labs
  • Cloud Computing
  • Mobile Applications
  • RFID & Networked Enterprise
  • Security and Identity Management

More information is available at

We are now inviting extended abstracts (1,200 - 1,500 words) for technical papers, visionary papers, business and government case studies. Proposals to arrange 90 minute thematically focused workshop sessions are also welcome. Related themes and suggestions for papers and sessions are outlined in the Call for Papers.

Call for Papers

Important Deadlines

  • Submission deadline for Extended Abstracts: 16 March 2012
  • Acceptance decision: 20 April
  • Submission of full paper: 18 May

The scientific programme for eChallenges e-2012 is based on an open Call for Papers and the conference language is English.

All extended abstracts must be submitted online by 16 March for double blind peer review by the International Programme Committee.

Papers should focus on a research or eAdoption topic on which a case study, initial or final results can be published. General project descriptions are not appropriate. All papers must highlight the level of innovation and actual or expected impact.

Please bear in mind that the extended abstracts submitted are double blind peer reviewed so they should not provide contact details within the text of the extended abstract submitted. All extended abstracts are submitted as text via a form - tables and diagrams can be submitted as part of the full paper submission in April.

Extended abstracts should provide a good overview of your full paper and cover the following headings:

  • Introduction - Issues to be addressed
  • Objectives of your paper
  • Methodology Used
  • Technology or Business Case Description
  • Conclusions and Summary Recommendations

Workshop proposals must also be registered by 16 March. Each workshop proposal should be supported by a minimum of two papers per workshop session. Authors submit abstracts via Abstract Submission process, as these will be double blind peer reviewed by the IPC.

We look forward to receiving your extended abstracts and workshop submissions by 16 March.


AEGIS and ACCESSIBLE project will present/demonstrate some of their tools at the 27th Annual International Technology and Persons with Disabilities Conference (CSUN 2012) which will be held in San Diego, CA between February 27- March 3, 2012 at the Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel:

  • Using the AEGIS OAF: Making an Accessible RIA (Thursday, March 1, 2012 - 4:20 PM PST)
    • Track/Topic: Web Accessibility
    • Session Description: Demonstration of a suite of open source developer tools: we create an accessible web application, following the Open Accessibility Framework from the AEGIS project.
    • Author(s): Nikolaos Kaklanis (Centre for Research and Technology Hellas),  Peter Korn (Oracle)
  • Using the AEGIS OAF: Making Java Mobile Apps (Thursday, March 1, 2012 - 10:40 AM PST)
    • Track/Topic: Employment
    • Session Description: Demonstration of a suite of open source developer tools; we create an accessible Java mobile application, utilizing the Open Accessibility Framework from the AEGIS project.
    • Author(s): Jon Azpiroz (Fundación Vodafone España), Maria Fernanda Cabrera (Life Supporting Technologies – Universidad Politécnica de Madrid), Peter Korn (Oracle)

ACCESSIBLE's "NetBeans plugin" developed by ACCESSIBLE will be shown in the RIA session and the "stand alone DIAS" with LWUIT support will be shown in the mobile one.


AEGIS will be at CSUN 2O12 with 2 sessions on March 1st:

Title: Using the AEGIS OAF: making an accessible RIA

  • Date: Thursday, March 01, 2012
  • Time: 4:20 PM
  • Location: Ford AB

Title: Using the AEGIS OAF: making Java Mobile apps

  • Date: Thursday, March 01, 2012
  • Time: 10:40 AM
  • Location: Gregory AB

The 27th Annual International Technology and Persons with Disabilities Conference (CSUN) will be held in San Diego, CA between February 27- March 3, 2012 at the Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel.

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