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- Even to Braille Printing -


"Barrier-free" is often said these days.
It is to enable a handicapped person to live more freely by removing what is an obstacle to life in society.
With the current, braille, which is used as characters for the visually impaired, is now getting more and more familiar to nonhandicapped people as well, being used even for vending machines, direction boards in railroad stations, cans of beer and so on.
Braille is originally made by forming unevenness on a sheet of white paper by pressing a pen point against the underside of the paper. A projection is made on the surface of the paper when the pen point presses against the other side. This is called embossing.

To transcribe (translate) a text into braille by hand, braille had to be typed upside down, that is, brail for reading was different from that for typing. For that reason, only skilled people in braille were able to type braille; it used to be a very confusing work for a novice.
With the spread of personal computers, a braille text can be made easier now, like printing a normal text with a word processor, with the use of editing software and printer for braille.
However, what if you have to make a lot of copies of invitations, pamphlets, and so on? A normal text can be photocopied, while a braille text must be printed out with a braille printer as many as you need. Brail printer is not as quick as normal laser printer; because one or some pins pound the paper line by line, it takes very much time to "print" braille.
In addition, since the embossments are made out of paper and therefore easy to be smashed, the readability easily deteriorates.

Touch print

Touch Print, which was developed by San-ichi Kougeisha (in Matsudo, Chiba), prints braille heaping up special ultraviolet-hardening ink by screen-printing.
Braille is formed of hardened ink, which will not be smashed or worn away.
Transparent ink enables to print braille over a print for the sighted without changing the design.
Printed materials can be distributed to both the sighted and the visually impared. Moreover, this gives the sighted a chance to see or feel braille printed materials, which enhances public awareness of barrier-free, and the use of colored or fluorescent ink can set off the design for the sighted as well.
And furthermore, taking advantage of screen-printing, it can print on any materials -paper, plastics, metal, glass, and so on. Once a plate is made, lots of copies of a braille printed material can be made in a short time.

Available as a System

NEWLONG SEIMITSU KOGYO produces printing systems with the Touch Print.
A system consists of three units: a braille punch for makeup, a braille printer for actual printing, and an ultraviolet drying furnace for hardening printed ink.
Braille Punch:
A Braille drill:
You can operate this unit as a braille printer on a PC by connecting the PC to the unit with an RS-232-C (serial) cable.
An extended function, which emulates the ESA721 by JTR Corporation (in Kita-ku, Tokyo.), is available besides the basic function of printing with an NABCC code.
Any braille-editing software that is compatible with the ESA721 is capable of punching for braille makeup whether in DOS version or Windows version.
Especially the EDEL, which is compatible with the graphic mode of the ESA721, is capable of punching out figures as well as texts, so plates for a picture book, for example, can be made easily.
Braille Printer:
This unit prints braille with ultraviolet-hardening ink through a punched plate.
Simplified operation enables anyone to operate printing; all you need is just to put a work piece on the printing table and push the table into the unit.
UV drying furnace:
This unit exposes printing work pieces to ultraviolet rays to harden the printed ink.
Operate this unit the same way as the braille printer; just put a work piece on the table and press the start button.
When the fixed time of drying is over, the table automatically returns.
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