1 Greetings, 2 3 (written to you from the 45th floor of the Marriott hotel, 4 overlooking Times Square) 5 6 Earlier this evening Pat Sueltz, Marney Beard, Marc Mulcahy, 7 Pierce Crowell, a number of other Sun folks from NY and their 8 guests, and Thomas Friehoff of BAUM attended the 2002 Helen Keller 9 Achievement Awards at the New York Marriott Marquis hotel in 10 Manhattan. 11 12 At this black tie affair, Pat and Peter received the award on 13 behalf of Sun Microsystems and the GNOME community for the GNOME 14 Accessibility framework in the GNOME 2.0 platform. The other 15 honorees this year were Maurice Greenberg of American International 16 Group for corporate philanthropy, Kathleen Barclay of GM 17 for employment opportunity, and Ronnie Milsap who received the 18 Personal Achievement award. 19 20 In her acceptance speech remarks, Pat specifically recognized the 21 work of the GNOME community, including (by name) Bill Haneman of 22 Sun, Owen Taylor, Michael Meeks, and Havoc Pennington for their 23 contributions, and also recognizing the corporate contributions 24 of Red Hat and Ximian. Pat underscored the importance of open, 25 collaborative accessibility solutions - that support for people with 26 disabilities in GNOME, [GNU/Linux] and UNIX is not the domain of 27 any single company, but is now in the hands of the larger 28 community, who can find and fix problems that may arise 29 without being beholden to Sun or anyone else. Pat then 30 highlighted the contributions of the Sun Beijing team to 31 Mozilla accessibility, and the Sun Hamburg team OpenOffice 32 accessibility. Finally, Pat noted the contributions that Bill 33 and Peter have made as the architects of GNOME accessibility, 34 and she turned the stage over to Peter. 35 36 In his remarks, Peter (that's me, your humble author) spoke 37 briefly about the philosophy of the GNOME Accessibility 38 architecture - defining a clear accessibility contract and 39 then implementing that in the core building blocks 40 of applications and the desktop. He further highlighted the GNOME 41 On-screen Keyboard which the University of Toronto 42 Adaptive Technology Resource Center is contributing to the 43 community, and the Gnopernicus screen reader and screen 44 magnifier which BAUM Retec A.G. is contributing to the community. 45 Finally, Peter quoted Helen Keller herself, who said "Alone we can 46 do so little; together we can do so much", and again underscored 47 that GNOME Accessibility is a community effort - that with this 48 work, the community is delivering an alternative to the dominant 49 traditional desktop that is compelling, accessible, and also 50 dramatically more affordable. 51 52 53 It was a wonderful evening, and a great affirmation of all of our work. 54 55 Sun's press release about the event can be found at: 56 57 http://www.sun.com/smi/Press/sunflash/2002-09/sunflash.20020924.1.html 58 59 The AFB press release about the event can be found at: 60 61 http://www.afb.org/info_document_view.asp?DocumentID=1806 62 63 Regards, 64 65 Peter
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