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Independence Through Technology
Embossed Braille

Embossed Braille

CSB produces many hundreds of embossed Hebrew Braille volumes each year. Most of them are custom-tailored to the needs of the reader. For example, some children are able to read double-spaced Braille only, while others are able to read single-sided Braille only. CSB accommodates each child according to his or her specific needs.

CSB technology has created certain Braille innovations that are unavailable anywhere in the world:

  • Braille\Print. CSB has developed software which produces Hebrew Braille volumes with visible print beneath the Braille. This is a significant aid for the parents and teachers of blind children who can now assist their children in reading. In the past, a common problem faced by Braille-illiterate parents whose children read Braille was helping their children keep place by davening or finding a special tefillah. Through a three step production process, CSB creates special print files from ready-to-emboss Braille files and uses a custom program to automatically create a print file that aligns itself precisely below the Braille characters. The Braille paper is then run through a tractor feed printer twice (once for each side) and then is sent to CSB’s Braille embosser. One error along the way and the entire volume is rendered useless. This innovation alone has changed the landscape of education for blind children in Braille. The parents, teacher, and child are now on the same page, literally.
  • Braille Chumash\Rashi, Gemara\Rashi. CSB developed software which produces Braille volumes of Chumash and Rashi, or Gemara and Rashi in which the main text of the Chumash or Gemara is on the top of the page and the accompanying Rashi commentary is at the bottom [as in the case of standard seforim]. A full set of Braille\Print Chumash\Rashi comprises 22 volumes and takes a week to prepare (!). Producing these multi-text volumes is approximately a 35 step process. In fact, a key component in this process is performed by an elaborate Microsoft Word Macro written by CSB.
  • Special Hebrew Braille Projects. CSB has done many innovative projects for clients who require Braille. An estimated 50 volumes each year are heavily customized. For example:
    1. A blind teacher required her Braille reader match the line and page numbers of the sighted students’ books to enable her to teach them.
    2. Most adult clients receive customized siddurim and machzorim to make their volumes lighter and more accessible.
    3. Some clients request certain Braille symbols be used in place of common words thereby compressing the volume.
    4. One CSB client is the chazzan on Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur and uses an extremely customized machzor to keep his pace moving while giving him instant access to the text.
  • Artscroll and Feldheim Books in Braille. CSB provides the blind with Artscroll and Feldheim books in Braille. These publishers generously provide CSB free of charge digital files to create flawless Braille reproductions of their printed books. At times this demands that they perform significant modifications to prepare the files for CSB’s use. These books include Braille books with the pictures bound into the Braille volume. Captions fully describing every image are added by CSB for blind mothers’ to read to their sighted children and explain the details of the picture. [In an amazing, and heartwarming twist, the captions of these pages are written by women suffering with ALS. through the medium of eye-tracking devices, in which they are trained by CSB!]
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