- Press Release Distribution

Speech Accessibility Project’s three newest partners are dedicated to people with cerebral palsy

Organizations who serve people with cerebral palsy are providing crucial support to the Speech Accessibility Project.

( The Speech Accessibility Project is partnering with several organizations who serve people with cerebral palsy as it recruits more participants for its speech recognition technology work. They include ADAPT Community Network, the Cerebral Palsy Foundation and CP Unlimited.

The project is recruiting U.S. and Puerto Rican adults with cerebral palsy, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Down syndrome, Parkinson’s and those who have had a stroke. Funded by Big Tech companies Amazon, Apple, Google, Meta and Microsoft, the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign is using the project to train voice recognition technologies to understand people with diverse speech patterns and disabilities.

Mark Hasegawa-Johnson.“These partnerships are critical to the mission of the Speech Accessibility Project because they put us in contact with people for whom current technology is not yet accessible,” said Mark Hasegawa-Johnson, a professor of electrical and computer engineering and the lead researcher on the Speech Accessibility Project. “We want to create a communication channel by which those people can help speech technologists to create better, more accessible technologies in the near future.”

Alliance Research Foundation has also shared the project’s recruitment materials.

ADAPT Community Network Ronak Parikh.ADAPT Community Network, formerly United Cerebral Palsy of New York City, is a non-profit organization and pioneer in providing cutting-edge programs and services that improve the quality of life for people with disabilities and their families in New York City. Its programs include advocating for accessible public education for all, community residential opportunities for adults, family support services for children, adults and caregivers, advancement in assistive technology, and creating opportunities for employment.

Ronak Parikh, the organization’s senior vice president of community and business development, said ADAPT believes the Speech Accessibility Project will “ultimately improve the speech recognition capabilities of everyday technology so that they too can use and take advantage of technology that many of us take for granted.

“This project also aligns with our Smart Homes Initiative, where we are implementing different technology in our residential programs to allow people that we support to live more independently with less staff assistance,” he said.

ADAPT staff members are promoting the project to those they serve who have atypical speech. ADAPT is also sharing information about the project and its possible technology implications across statewide and national cerebral palsy networks.

Cerebral Palsy Foundation Ashley Harris Whaley.

The Cerebral Palsy Foundation’s mission is to be a catalyst for creating positive change for people with CP. The foundation supports 17 million people with CP worldwide, and works across health care, education, advocacy and awareness, and design and technology.

“We are passionate about expanding ease of use and access to technology for people with cerebral palsy,” said Ashley Harris Whaley, director of adult programs, which she said is an important reason the foundation is working with the Speech Accessibility Project. “We see the foundation's role in this project as a system of support for both the [University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign] team and our community, while serving as a connection point between our community and this amazing work that is happening."

CP Unlimited Sebastian Chittilappilly.

CP Unlimited promotes opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to achieve fulfilling lives. The agency offers comprehensive, person-centered residential, Day Hab and Article 16 services to people with disabilities via a staff of 2,500 committed team members.

“The Speech Accessibility Project is an important step forward for the field as well as CP Unlimited,” said Sebastian Chittilappilly, chief of programs at CP Unlimited. “By informing the programs and devices that help people with cerebral palsy communicate with caregivers and other loved ones, these technologies can be refined to help the greatest number of persons with disabilities.”

Marilyn Ladewig, CP Unlimited’s speech language pathology supervisor, said the project will make a huge difference for those with CP.

“Being understood by technology can mean the difference between paying a bill easily or calling 911 with your voice,” she said. “As a speech language pathologist, having automatic speech recognition work for the developmentally different population would mean more and better communication for my patients.”

CP Unlimited is committed to integrating digital tools to better learn, improve, and deliver best-in-class services in its varied settings in New York City, Yonkers and the Hudson Valley.

Interested in joining the project? Sign up online here.



UT Arlington increases interdisciplinary grants by 40% in 2024

UT Arlington increases interdisciplinary grants by 40% in 2024
The Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation at The University of Texas at Arlington has awarded seven Interdisciplinary Research Program (IRP) grants totaling nearly $140,000 to foster collaboration between groups that do not typically work together. This represents an increase in funding of 40% over the grants awarded in 2023. “UT Arlington has increased its support of interdisciplinary research as we know that many of today’s great societal challenges ...

MIT researchers introduce generative AI for databases

CAMBRIDGE, MA — A new tool makes it easier for database users to perform complicated statistical analyses of tabular data without the need to know what is going on behind the scenes. GenSQL, a generative AI system for databases, could help users make predictions, detect anomalies, guess missing values, fix errors, or generate synthetic data with just a few keystrokes. For instance, if the system were used to analyze medical data from a patient who has always had high blood pressure, it could catch a blood pressure reading that ...

Exponentially increasing understanding of early life on Earth

Exponentially increasing understanding of early life on Earth
Despite decades of research, there’s still much scholars don’t understand about life’s beginnings and early evolution. A UC Riverside paper has opened the door to understanding more and to framing future studies that could help predict climate change and search for life beyond Earth.   “This paper strives to inform the Earth sciences community where the research needs to go next,” said Christopher Tino, a UCR PhD candidate during the time of research and a first author. Many studies have explored signs ...

New method could yield fast, cross-country quantum network

New method could yield fast, cross-country quantum network
Quantum computers offer powerful ways to improve cybersecurity, communications, and data processing, among other fields. To realize these full benefits, however, multiple quantum computers need to be connected to build quantum networks or a quantum internet. Scientists have struggled to come up with practical methods of building such networks, which must transmit quantum information over long distances. Now, researchers at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering (PME) have proposed a new approach — building long quantum channels using vacuum sealed tubes ...

Aging retinal pigmented epithelium: Omics-based insights into vision decline

Aging retinal pigmented epithelium: Omics-based insights into vision decline
“These findings potentially support employing anti-aging therapies such as senolytic pharmacologic compounds to prevent or ameliorate progression to AMD [...]” BUFFALO, NY- July 9, 2024 – A new editorial paper was published in Aging (listed by MEDLINE/PubMed as "Aging (Albany NY)" and "Aging-US" by Web of Science) Volume 16, Issue 12, entitled, “Aging retinal pigmented epithelium: omics-based insights into vision decline.” In this new editorial, researchers Ioan V. Matei and Luminita Paraoan from ...

Public health researchers detail way forward post-pandemic

AURORA, Colo. (July 9, 2024) – In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. public health system must focus on critical questions of accountability, politicization and updating data systems if it is to do its job well and maintain the trust of the American people, according to a new report from the Colorado School of Public Health. The report, authored by Professor Jonathan Samet, MD, MS, of the Colorado School of Public Health and Professor Ross Brownson, PhD, of Washington University in St. Louis, was published recently in the journal Health Affairs. In ...

Improving 'health span' through slowing age-related cognitive decline

Improving health span through slowing age-related cognitive decline
Two University of Oklahoma researchers have been awarded more than $2 million in grants from the Hevolution Foundation to further their studies on age-related cognitive impairment, with an emphasis on improving “health span,” or the number of years a person remains healthy. While modern medicine can help extend a person’s life span, researchers are increasingly studying ways to increase their healthy years of life. Because the process of aging increases the risk for memory problems and dementia, researchers must understand why as a first step toward delaying cognitive issues until later in life. The Hevolution Foundation ...

Globally significant upwelling is driven by topographical features on seafloor

Irvine, Calif., July 9, 2024 – Exactly how the turbulent mixing of ocean water relates to global overturning circulation has been little understood by oceanographers, but an international research team, including an Earth system scientist at the University of California, Irvine, has found that bumpy topographical features along the sloping ocean floor contribute significantly to ocean seawater upwelling.   In a paper published recently in Nature, the researchers describe a “vigorous near-bottom upwelling” that results in the upward transition of water from denser to lighter ocean layers at a rate ...

Dolls and trucks: Political right and left share some parenting beliefs

Key takeaways Virtually all study respondents on the political left and more than 75% on the right supported allowing children to play with both traditionally “girl” and “boy” toys. Those on both sides of the political spectrum also supported the idea that girls should be able to aspire to traditionally male pursuits. However, while most left-wing activists supported the idea of a child living in a way that does not align with their birth sex, most right-wing activists rejected the idea. Society appears deeply divided on how to parent with regard to gender. For example, some parents throw “gender reveal” ...

Delaying diabetes with diet and exercise for 4 years results in better long-term health

Delaying diabetes with diet and exercise for 4 years results in better long-term health
Individuals diagnosed with prediabetes can reduce their long-term risk of death and diabetes-related health complications if they delay the onset of diabetes for just four years through diet and exercise. Guangwei Li of the China-Japan Friendship Hospital and colleagues report these findings in a new study published July 9th in the open-access journal PLOS Medicine. Type 2 diabetes is associated with an increased risk of death and disability, and imposes a significant economic burden on individuals and societies worldwide. Lifestyle changes, such as eating a healthy diet and getting more exercise, can delay or reduce the risk of developing diabetes in people ...


The research was wrong: study shows moderate drinking won’t lengthen your life

Save your data on printable magnetic devices? New laser technique’s twist might make this reality

Early onset dementia more common than previously reported – the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease seems to be on the rise

Pesticides potentially as bad as smoking for increased risk in certain cancers

NUS researchers develop new battery-free technology to power electronic devices using ambient radiofrequency signals

New protein discovery may influence future cancer treatment

Timing matters: Scripps Research study shows ways to improve health alerts

New gene therapy approach shows promise for Duchenne muscular dystrophy

Chemical analyses find hidden elements from renaissance astronomer Tycho Brahe’s alchemy laboratory

Pacific Northwest launches clean hydrogen energy hub

Tiny deletion in heart muscle protein briefly affects embryonic ventricles but has long-term effects on adult atrial fibrillation

Harms of prescribing NSAIDs to high risk groups estimated to cost NHS £31m over 10 years

Wearing a face mask in public spaces cuts risk of common respiratory symptoms, suggests Norway study

Some private biobanks overinflating the value of umbilical cord blood banking in marketing to expectant parents

New research in fatty liver disease aims to help with early intervention

Genetics reveal ancient trade routes and path to domestication of the Four Corners potato

SNIS 2024: New study shows critical improvements in treating rare eye cancer in children

Wearable devices can increase health anxiety. Could they adversely affect health?

Addressing wounds of war

Rice researchers develop innovative battery recycling method

It’s got praying mantis eyes

Stroke recovery: It’s in the genes

Foam fluidics showcase Rice lab’s creative approach to circuit design

Montana State scientists publish evidence for new groups of methane-producing organisms

Daily rhythms depend on receptor density in biological clock

New England Journal of Medicine publishes outcomes from practice-changing E1910 trial for patients with BCR::ABL1-negative B-cell precursor acute lymphoblastic leukemia

Older adults want to cut back on medication, but study shows need for caution

Nationwide flood models poorly capture risks to households and properties

Does your body composition affect your risk of dementia or Parkinson’s?

Researchers discover faster, more energy-efficient way to manufacture an industrially important chemical

[] Speech Accessibility Project’s three newest partners are dedicated to people with cerebral palsy
Organizations who serve people with cerebral palsy are providing crucial support to the Speech Accessibility Project.