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A review of the results of the pilot phase of the TIDE projects

The European Commission, DG XIII, has published "High Tide", a review of the results of the pilot phase of the TIDE programme from 1991 to 1994. TIDE, a technological initiative for the socio-economic integration of the disabled and elderly, was established in 1991 to carry ou...
The European Commission, DG XIII, has published "High Tide", a review of the results of the pilot phase of the TIDE programme from 1991 to 1994. TIDE, a technological initiative for the socio-economic integration of the disabled and elderly, was established in 1991 to carry out research projects for the benefit of the elderly and disabled.

Prior to the TIDE initiative, European research and development projects in this area tended to cover very specialist fields, such as aspects of biotechnology (BIOMED) or new materials (BRITE-EURAM). TIDE was therefore conceived as providing a more integrated and dedicated approach to technological research in order to fill gaps left by the existing programmes.

This review details the establishment of the TIDE research initiative in 1991, and looks at the results of the first 21 pilot projects. These pilot projects were grouped into five clusters, according to the type of application and the types of technology used. The review groups each project into sections corresponding to these clusters:

- General models and tools;
- Manipulation and control;
- Personal communications;
- Safety and daily support;
- Access to information.

Each chapter in the review deals with a separate TIDE project and contains detailed information on the accomplishments of the project. Suggestions on how improvements might be made and the way towards future developments and potential research projects is also included. Many of these projects have now evolved into projects on the market, whilst other horizontal activities have become a reference in the assistive technologies field. Examples of the projects covered include:

- GUIB: Textual and graphical user interfaces for blind people;
- RAID: Robot for assisting the integration of the disabled;
- MUSA: Multilingual and multimedia speech aid for hearing and language disabilities;
- HEART: Horizontal European activities in rehabilitation technology;
- CAPS: Communications and access to information for people with special needs.

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