The TIDE programme is a European Union initiative for disabled and elderly persons. The aim of TIDE is to promote RTD applications in order to improve the quality of life for disabled and elderly persons, and to improve the European industry and market in products and services that meet the needs of such persons. TIDE was initiated in 1993 by a pilot phase of ECU 18 million and a bridge phase of ECU 42 million that is currently running. Some of the application domains that are addressed by RTD projects in the the current bridge phase are as follows: - Educational and vocational support; - Access to telecommunications; - Teleworking; - Computer environments and public terminals; - Home systems and integrated systems; - Localization and remote support; - Advanced wheelchairs; - Integrated controls; - Robotics systems; - Orientation and public environment navigation; - Enhancement of speech capability, sign language, hearing aids, and vision; - Augmentative communications; - Motor rehabilitation. Under the Fourth Framework Programme, TIDE will become a subprogramme of the Telematics programme for applications in the field of information and telecommunications technologies. The budget allocation for TIDE will be ECU 65 million. The new workplan for this phase will contain the following areas of RTD work: - Access to communications and information technologies; - Information and communication systems for enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of services supporting independent living; - Integrated systems supporting the activities of independent living, education, work leisure, mobility and training; - Applications of manipulation and control technology; - Technology supporting assessment, restoration and enhancement of function.