In a huge leap towards Accessibility and Section 508 Compliance, Facebook has developed a tool called Automatic Alternative Text (AAT). The 1.59-billion-user social network’s new tool allows the visually impaired and blind to “see” posted images by having those images read out loud what they are about. Adding alternative text (or alt text) for images is the first principle of web accessibility.
Facebook’s artificial intelligence (AI) can identify objects in photos, personal characteristics and landscapes. Once captured, that information is relayed to the user via a text-to-speech applications, also called Assistive Technology (IT).
Prior to AAT, visually impaired Facebook users were only informed that someone had posted a photo. While there are currently 50,000 people using AAT, Facebook is still working on ways to create fully formed captions and alt text attributes.
Learn more about How Facebook is using artificial intelligence (AI) to produce photo captions for blind Facebook users.